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C-  iT-"^=)    J7.  10 









Fret  not  thyself  because  of  the  ungodly,  neither  be  thou  envious  against 
the  evil  doers.  For  they  shall  soon  be  cut  down  like  the  grass,  and  be 
withered  even  as  the  green  herb.  Put  thou  thy  trust  in  the  Lord,  an^ 
lx>  doing  good  ;  dwell  in  the  land,  and  verily  thou  shalt  be  fed. 

Psalm  xxxvii.    i — 3 




AND  NEW  YORK:  15  EAST  16''"  STREET 


Cl2i%  51.10 





^   ^ 







J,  11.  N. 

'AJAubcr^  iSji.J 

A    J 


The  following  work  was  written  in  the  early  part  of  last 
year,  for  Messrs.  Rivington*s  "  Theological  Library  ;"  but  as 
it  seemed,  on  its  completion,  little  fitted  for  the  objects  with 
which  that  publication  has  been  undertaken,  it  makes  its 
appearance  in  an  independent  form.  Some  apology  is  due 
to  the  reader  for  the  length  of  the  introductory  chapter,  but 
it  was  intended  as  the  opening  of  a  more  extensive  under- 
taking. It  may  be  added,  to  prevent  mistake,  that  the 
theological  works  cited  at  the  foot  of  the  page,  are  referred 
to  for  the  facts,  rather  than  the  opinions  they  contain; 
though  some  of  them,  as  the  "  Defensio  Fidei  Nicenae," 
evince  gifts,  moral  and  intellectual,  of  so  high  a  cast,  as  to 
render  it  a  privilege  to  be  allowed  to  sit  at  the  feet  of  their 
authors,  and  to  receive  the  words,  whicli  they  have  been,  as 
it  were,  commissioned  to  deliver. 

lOcloler,  1853,] 


A  VERY  few  words  will  suffice  for  the  purpose  of  explain- 
ing in  what  respects  the  Third  Edition  of  this  Volume 
differs  from  those  which  preceded  it. 

Its  text  has  been  relieved  of  some  portion  of  the  literary 
imperfections  necessarily  incident  to  a  historical  sketch,  its 
author's  first  work,  and  written  against  time. 

Also,  some  additions  have  been  made  to  the  foot-notes. 
These  are  enclosed  in  brackets,  many  of  them  being  merely 
references  (under  the  abbreviation  "  Ath.  Tr.")  to  his  anno- 
tations on  those  theological  Treatises  of  Athanasius,  which 
he  translated  for  the  Oxford  Library  of  the  Fathers. 

A  few  longer  Notes,  for  the  most  part  extracted  from 
other  publications  of  his,  form  an  Appendix. 

The  Table  of  Contents,  and  the  Chronological  Table 
have  both  been  enlarged. 

No  change  has  been  made  any  where  affecting  the 
opinions,  sentiments,  or  speculations  contained  in  tlie 
original  edition, — though  they  are  sometimes  expressed 
with  a  boldness  or  decision  which  now  displeases  him ; — 
except  that  two  sentences,  which  needlessly  reflected  on  the 
modern  Catholic  Church,  have,  without  hurting  the  context, 
been  relegated  to  a  place  by  themselves  at  the  end  of  the 

Aprilt  187 1. 




^Sri.Tiotil.— The  Churcli  of  Antioc/i  .... 

I.  Historical  connexion  of  Arianism   with   ihc    Anli- 

ochcne  School  r— 

Paulws.  Bishop  of  Antioch,  deposed  for  hcresj'         , 

The  Martyr  Lucian.         ...,,. 

His  disciples  the  first  Arians 

3.  Judaism  of  Antioch  ;^ 

Revival  of  the  fortunes  of  the  Jew  .... 
Patronized  by  successive  Emperors. 
Their  influence  upon  the  populace  and  the  Schools 
of  Syria     ....  ... 

3,  Quarto-deer  ma  US  :^ 

Of  the  Proconsulate 

Of  Syria 

Of  central  Asia  Minor 

Betraying  or  encouraging  a  Judaistic  spirit    , 

4.  Judaizers  indirectly  leading  to  Arianism  : — 

Mosaic  rites 

C.erinthians  and  Ebioniies 

Nazarenes       .  

Corroborative  facts 


Table  of  Contents. 


Section  II. — The  Schools  of  the  Sophists  •        •        •        •       -S 

1 .  Disputative  skill  of  Arians  : — 

As  of  Paulus  of  Samosata        .        •        •        •        •  27 

And  of  the  disciples  of  Aristotle      ....  29 

2.  Disputation  cultivated  in  the  Christian  Schools  r — 
Axioms  taken  from  logic  and  mathematics      •        •  33 
School  of  Artemas.           ..,.♦.  34 

3.  Tradition  losing  force  : — 

Contempt  of  predecessors  ,  .  # '  •  •  3^ 
Symbol  of  faith  indispensable .  .  •  •  •  36 
Unwillingness  of  the  Church  to  impose  it        •        •      36 

Section  III. — The  Church  of  Alexandria  •        •        •      39 

1.  Its  missionary  and  political  character : —         .        .      41 
Its  local  position       ..•••••      41 

Its  exoteric  teaching .42 

Catechetical  system 44 

Public  preaching •45 

Relative  influence  of  separate  Gospel  truths  .  .  46 
Example  of  Scripture  to  guide  us     .        .        •        .46 

2.  The  Disciplina  Arcani,  or  secret  teaching  : — 
Scripture  the  storehouse,  not  the  organ  of  teaching.  50 
Nor  Apologists  an  organ,  as  not  authoritative  .  51 
The  secret  teaching  consistent  with  the  rudimental.  53 
Not  arbitrary,  but  an  apostolical  tradition  .  .  54 
Not  derogatory  to  the  authority  of  Scripture  .  •  55 
Terminating  with  the  rise  of  the  Councils        •        •      55 

3.  The  Allegorical  method  : — 

National  with  the  Egyptians  .  .  •  •  •57 
Adopted  by  Greek  philosophy  •  •  .  •57 
Natural  to  the  human  mind     .         .         •         •         .       57 

Familiar  to  inspired  writers 58 

Scripture  uses  of  it  , 59 

Safeguards  necessary,  canons  for  its  use.  •  •  60 
Caution  of  Scripture  as  to  it     .        •        •        •        .61 

Traditionary  keys  for  it 62 

Alexandrian  use  of  it       .         •         •         •         •         .62 

4.  The  Economy  : — 

Used  by  Alexandrians  in  Scripture  difficulties      •        64 

Sanctioned  by  St,  Paul    .,.,-■  65 

Exemplified  by  tlie  Fathers 66 

Theory  and  dangcroasness  of  it       .         .         .         ,72 

As  leading-  to  deceit 73 

Divine  economies "74 

Scripture  economies 76 

False  economies 77 

5.  The  Dispensation  of  Paganism  ;— 

Paganism  in  one  aspect  divine       .        .        •        •79 

As  Found  in  Genesis  and  Job 81 

And  so  taught  by  the  Fathers         .         .         .         .  Sj 

Corollaries  from  this  doctrine S4 

As  regards  infidelity  and  apostasy  .         .         .         .  S5 

And  tlie  cultivation  ot  pagan  literature    .         .         ,  S6 

Abuse  of  Itie  doctrine S7 

6.  Platonism  : — 

Its  influence  on  the  language  of  theology         .         .  Sg 

Pagan  tradition  of  a  Trinity 90 

Platonic  Trinity 90 

How  far  adopted  by  the  School  of  Philo.         .         .  92 

By  the  Aiesandrlan  Fathers 93 

Instances 94. 

Apology  for  them 95 

For  Origcn 97 

Sbctioh  IW.—Tlie  Eclectic  Sect IQD 

I.   Its  characteristics  : — 

Its  principle  and  origin  , loi 

Ammonius.  its  founder 101 

Its  connexion  with  neologism loj 

Its  contrast  with  it 104 

Later  than  Origcn 107 

Though  an  excrescence  of  his  school        .         .         .  iiiS 
a.  Us  un congeniality  with  Arianism  :— 

As  mystical ,,109 

As  not  dis putative   ,         .         .         ,         .         .        ,i[a 

At  not  Judaic .        ,        , 110 

AsPlaioninic ill 

X.  Table  of  Cofiteiits. 


3.  Its  serviceableness  to  Arianism,  as  opposed  to  theo- 
logical mysteries 1 1 1 

And  to  formal  dogmas,  &c 113 

No  historical  evidence  of  its  aiding  Arianism  .        •  1 14 

Its  success  in  Syria •  115 

Section  V. — Sabellianism        .        •        ,        ,        ,        .iid 

1.  Its  history  : — 

Its  characteristic  doctrine 117 

In  Proconsular  Asia :    Noetus.        •        •        •        •     1 1 7 

In  Rome  :  Praxeas -iiy 

In  Africa:  Sabellius 118 

In  Phrygia :  Montanlsts.        •        .        .        ,        .118 

First  form,  Patripassian 121 

Second  form,  Emanative 1 24 

2.  Its  influence  on  the  language  of  Catholics  : — 

Of  Dionysius  of  Alexandria 125 

Of  Gregory  of  Neocaesarea 128 

On  the  use  of  the  Homousion 129 

Recapitulation  of  the  whole  Chapter      •        •        •130 



Section  I. — On  the  principle  of  the  formation  and  impo" 

sition  of  Creeds 133 

I.  Knowledge  of  the  Christian  doctrine  a  privilege  to 
be  sought  after  : — 
As  being  not  a  subjective  opinion,  but  the  truth     .     134 

And  reserved  and  concealed  by  the  early  Church 

From  reverence 

Unlike  the  present  state  of  religion  .        ,        • 
Contrary  temper  of  heresy  : — 
For  instance,  in  the  Gnostics   .        •        •        • 
And  still  more,  in  the  Arians  .        .        •        • 

Examples • 

Defenceless  state  of  Catholics .... 





Table  of  Contents. 

.   Text  of  Scripture  not  a  sufficii 
revealed  dogma  : — 
Implicit  faith     .... 
Action  of  the  intellect  vipon  it  , 
The  mind  tranquillized  thereby 
Attempted  comprehensions 
Fail  to  secure  the  truth    . 
And  to  make  it  a  bond  of  fellowship 
Hence  the  necessity  of  Creeds,  with  ulial  Hmitati 

liON  \\.~The  Scripture  doctrine  of  the  Trinity 
The  position  of  the  matter  of  evidence  : — ■ 
In  the  Old  Testament  commenced  . 
Completed  in  the  New     .... 
Inference  to  be  made  thence    .        .        . 
The  word  Person      ..... 

■■CTlox  Ml.— The  Ecclesiasticut  doctrine  of  the  Trii 

1,  Our  Lord  considered  as  the  Son  of  God  ;— 
The  term  "  Son"  denotes  His  derivation. 
And  therefore  His  dissimilarity  to  all  c 
Passages  from  the  Fathers 
He  who  is  born  of  God  is  God 
In  like  manner  He  is  "  R.idiance  from  the  Sun" 
Hence,  on  the  other  hand,  a  subordination  of  the 

Son  lo  the  Father     .... 
As  explained  by  Bull  .^nd  Petavius. 
Ministration  of  the  Son  and  Spirit .         . 
Abuse  of  the  term  "  Son"  .         . 

Leading  lo  materiality  and  ditheism 

2,  Our  Lord  considered  as  the  Word  of  God  : — 

The  term  "  Word"  corrects  ihe  abuse  of  the  term 
"Son,"  as  teaching  His  co-eternity  with  God  . 
And  His  office  of  mediation      .... 
Passages  from  the  Fathers       .... 
Abuse  of  the  term  "Word"     .... 

3,  Our  Lord  considered  "  of  God"  and  "  in  God :' 
Passages  from  the  Fathers  .... 
The  "  in  God"  is  the  "  co-inherence  "    . 

xii.  Table  of  Contents. 

Passages.  .  .  .  .  •  .  .  •174 
The  "of  God"  is  the  "  monarchia**  •        •    175 

Passages  .        ,        .        .        •        •        •        •    177 

Section  IV. — Variations  in  the  Ante^Nicene  Theological 

Statements 179 

1.  The  term  **  Insrenerate:  " — 

Applied  to  God ;  whether  to  be  predicated  of  the  Son  181 
The  Anomoean  controversy      .        .        •        -c        .181 

2.  The  "  Unoriginate  :'*— 

Whether  to  be  predicated  of  the  Son  •  .  ,•  182 
Passages  from  the  Fathers  in  illustration        •        •    183 

3.  The  "  Consubstantial :" — 

The  meaning  of  "substance"  or  "being"  •  •  185 
Of "  Consubstantial "  .  .  .  ,  •  .186 
Early  use  of  the  term       .        .        .        .        •        .187 

Doctrine  of  Emanation 189 

Imposed  an  heretical  sense  on  the  term  ,  •  .189 
The  history  of  the  term  "offspring"  .  •  .190 
Rejection  of  the   term    "consubstantial"   by    the 

Council  against  Paulus 192 

The  Alexandrians  keep  it        .         .        •        •        •     193 

4.  The  "  voluntary  generation  :" — 

Its  relation  to  the  doctrine  of  Emanation  •  •  194 
How  it  was  understood  in  relation  to  our  Lord        .     195 

5.  The  "  Word  Internal  "  or  "  External  :"— 

A  term  of  the  Stoics  and  Platonists.        .        .        .197 

Used  by  the  Fathers 197 

The  Word's  change  from  Internal  to  External  at 

the  creation 198 

A  kind  of  "  generation" 199 

Five  Fathers  accused  of  a  misconception  t  •199 
Passages  from  them  in  illustration  .        •        a        •199 

Section  V .—The  Arian  Heresy 

I.  Contrasted  with  other  heterodox  beliefs: 
As  to  its  fundamental  tenet 
With  that  of  the  Five  Fathers. 




Table  of  Contents. 

•  •  • 


Viz.  with  that  of  the  Eclectics  • 
Of  Gnosticism ..... 
Of  Paulianism.         .... 
And  of  Sabellianism         .         .         • 
2.   Its  doctrine  that: — 

What  has  an  origin  has  a  beginning 
What  has  a  beginning  is  a  creation 
What  God  willed  to  be  is  a  creation 
What  is  not  ingenerate  is  a  creation 
What  is  material  is  a  creation. 
**  0«/>' -begotten  "  means  "  immediately 
**  Not  one   of  the  creatures "  is  "  not 

creatures"         .         .         .    -     . 
**  Before  all  time  "  is  "before  all  creation 
All  titles  admit  of  a  secondary  sense 

3.  Its  original  documents  : — 
Arius  to  Kusebius    . 
Arius  to  Alexander . 
Arius's  Thalia 
Eusebius  to  Paulinus    • 
Alexander  to  Alexander 
Alexander's  -Encyclical 

4.  Its  characteristic  qualities 
Unscriptural     . 
Rationalistic     . 
Versatile .         •        • 
Shallow    .         .        • 
Evasive    . 
Flow  met  2^  Nicsca  • 














Table  of  Contents. 




Section  I. — History  of  the  Niccne  Council 

1.  History  of  Arius  : — 

Before  his  heresy    •        .        .        •        . 
Upon  it 

2.  Character  and  position  of  Constantine  : — 
His  view  of  Christianity  .... 
His  disappointment  at  its  dissensions  • 
His  conduct  towards  the  Donatists  .  • 
His  wish  for  religious  peace  .  •  • 
His  letter  to  Athanasius  and  Arius.  • 
He  convokes  the  Nicene  Council    •        • 

3.  Transactions  of  the  Council : — 
Disputations    ....•• 
Its  selection  of  the  test^  Homoiision  .        • 

Its  creed 


Brought  over  .••••• 
Banishment  of  Arius        •        •        •        . 

Section  II. — Consequences  of  the  Nicene  Cou7iciL 

1.  TheArians: — 
Their  political  and  party  spirit        .        • 
Ingratiate  themselves  with  Constantine  • 
Their  leaders,  Eusebius  of  Nicomedia     • 
And  Eusebius  of  Caesarea 
Constantia,  sister  to  Constantine 

2.  The  Catholics  : — 
Successful  at  Nicaea        .        • 
Yet  their  prospects  clouded 
Anus's  restoration  attempted  by  Constantine 
At  Alexandria. 
At  Constantinople   . 
The  prayers  of  Bishop  Alexander 
Death  of  Arius. 













.  259 

.  260 

.  260 

•  261 
.  263 

.  265 

•  266 

•  266 

•  267 
.  268 

•  269 
.  270 



Ikction  I. —  The  E-'scb%ans. 

I.  Character  of  the  Eusebjan  leaders  : — 

Acacius Z75 

George 275 

Leontius  .■,.•..•■  276 

Eudoxius I         .  277 

V^cns 27S 

3,  Their  proceedings  : — 

Against  Eustalhiiis,  &c 280 

They  join  the  Meletians  of  Egypt    ....  2S1 

Against  Athanasius 2S2 

Hold  Councils  at  Cxsarea  and  Tyre        .         .         .  2S2 

And  depose  him 284 

I  3-  Their  Creeds  : — 

Athanasius  and  other  c\i)e^  at  Rome       .         .         .  2S5 

Roman  Council 2S5 

Eusebian  Council  of  the  Dedication         .        .        .  2SG 

Adopts  the  creed  of  Lucian zHd 

Its  second,  third,  and  fourth  creeds.         .         .         .  28; 

Its  fifth  creed,  the  Macrostich 287 

Great  Council  of  Sardica 2S9 

Eusebians  leaving  it  for  Philippopolis      .         .         .  2S9 

Acquits  and  restores  .4thanaBius      ....  ago 

Retantalion  of  Valens  and  Ursaciu'i       .         •         .  2gt 

i  \h—The  Scmi 

Its  subtlety  and  indist 

Its  symbol,  the  Homteiisioji 257 

It  considered  our  Lord  to  be  a  true  Son  .         .         .  298 

Its  self-con  I  I'adict  ions 2gg 

f  3.  Their  leaders  : — 

Men  of  high  character 299 

Basil  of  Ancyra        >,...«.  300 

Mark  of  Areihusa ^oi 

Cyril  of  Jeru-alcm 303 

XV  i.  Table  of'  Contents. 

j  PAGE 

Eusebius  of  Samosata      ••..••  302 
On    the    contrary,    Macedonius,    the   Pneumato- 

machist          .......  303 

3.  Their  proceedings  : — 

They  start  out  as  a  party  after  Sardica  .                 ,  303 

"  Opposed  Ijy  the  Acacians         .         ....  304 

Acacian  device  of  only  Scripture  terms  ,         ,        ,  305 

The  Acacian  Homoeoji      ......  306 

Section  III. — The  Athajiasians, 

'       I.  Paulus  ofv Constantinople  : — 

Banished  and  Martyred 311 

2.  Lucius  of  Hadrianople  : — 

Martyred.         ........  312 

3.-  Eusebian  Council  of  Sirmium  : — 

Deposes  Photinus •        •  314 

4.  •  Persecution  of  the  West. 

Eusebian  Council  of  Aries        .         .         .         ;  314 

The  orthodox  Bishops  excommunicate  Athanasius  .  315 
Fall  of  Vincent        .         .         .         .        •        .        •315 

5.  Eusebian  Council  of  Milan; — 

Condemns  Athanasius 3i(> 

Banishment  of  Dionysius 317 

Eusebius  of  Vercellae        .        •        -317 

Hilary       ...•••  318 

6.  Proceedings  against  Pope  Liberius  : — 

His  noble  conduct 319 

His  banishment         .         .                 ....  319 

He  is  tempted 321 

A  comprehension  of  parties      .        •         •        •  321 

His  fall 322 

He   renounces   Athanasius  and  signs  a  Eusebian 

creed 322 

He  afterwards  recovers  himself       ....  323 

7.  Proceedings  against  Hosius  v — 
Eusebian  Creed  offered  for  his  acceptance       .        »  323 

His  brave  conduct •        •  324 

Scourged  and  racked •  325 


Signs  the  creed 

Refuses  to  condemn  Athanasius       .         .         .         . 

His  repentance ■        . 

,  Proceedings  against  Athanasius : — 
The  Alexandrians  prepare  themselves  for  the  trial , 
Recent  sufferings    . 
Encouraged  by  the  Sardic 
George  of  Cappadcicia,  the  Eusebian  Bishop  . 
Irruption  of  Syrianus  into  the  Church 
Escape  of  Athanasius       .... 
Persecution  of  Egj-ptian  Bishops  and  people 
Manifesto  ot  Coi 

r  Acacians  again 

tecTlON  \\ .—  The  Anam'x.m 
I.  Rise  of  the  heresy  ; — 

Eunomius        .        * 
a.  Its  history  :^ 

They  join  the  Euscbia 


At  Qcsarea 

And  Antiocli 

Semi-Arian  Council  at  Ancyra 
Appeal  of  the  two  parties  to  Conslantius. 
The  Emperor's  changes  of  mind 
Preparation  for  an  Ecumenical  Council  , 
Acacian  Council  of  Seleucia    . 
Acacian  Council  of  Ariminum.         . 
Triumph  of  Arianism  throughout  the  world 
Disgrace  of  Aetius   ,         .  ,         . 

Death  of  Constantius       .... 


H'lON  I. — The  Council  of  Alexandria  in  the  reign  of 

t.  The  question  of  the  Arianizing  Bishops  x — 

lis  difficulty 357 

lis  solution 359 


Table  of  Contents. 

2.  The  question  of  the  Succession  at  Antioch  :■ 

Meletius • 

His  confession  of  orthodoxy    , 

Lucifer's  interference 

Schism  in  consequence    . 
3;  The  question  of  the  hypostasis : — 

The  term  Hypostasis  or  Persona 

Whether  three  or  one 

Differences  among  Catholics  • 

Letter  of  the  Council 

Section  IL — The  Ecumenical  Council  of  Constantinople 
in  the  reign  of  Theodosius. 
I .  Persecution  under  Valens  : — 
End  of  the  Semi-Arian  heresy         ,        ,         , 
The  reconciliation  of  its  Bishops  to  the  Church 

2.  Revival  of  orthodoxy  at  Constantinople  : — 

Gregory  Nazianzen. 

His  proceeding  there 

The  Arians  conform  under  Theodosius 

His  perplexities        .         .  • 

Opposition  made  to  him  .  • 

He  resolves  to  retire        .  • 

His  enthronization  ,         .  • 

His  disgust  with  all  parties  • 

3.  The  Ecumenical  Council : — 
The  business  before  it 
Death  of  its  President  Meletius 
Its  proceedings         .        •  . 
Resignation  of  Gregory  .  , 
Its  creed .        •        .        .  • 













Chronological  Tablis  • 


Table  of  Contents. 



MoTB  1,  The  S^-rian  School  of  Theology  . 

2,  The  early  doctrine  of  the  divine  genne^ 

3,  The  Confessions  at  Sinnium 

4,  The  early  use  of  usLi  and  hypostasis    . 

5,  Orthodoxy  of  the  faithful  during  Arianism 

6,  Chronology  of  the  Councils. 

7,  Omissions  in  the  text  of  the  Third  Edition 


.  469 
•    474 

4    f 






It  is  proposed  in  the  following  pages  to  trace  tlie 
outlines  of  the  history  of  Arianism,  between  the  fii-st 
and  the  second  General  Councils.  These  are  its 
natural  chronological  limits,  whether  by  Arianism  wc 
mean  a  heresy  or  a  party  in  the  Church.  In  the 
Council  held  at  NicEea,  in  Eithynia,  A.D.  325,  it  was 
brmally  detected  and  condemned.  In  the  subsequent 
s  it  ran  its  course,  through  various  modifications 
r  opinion,  and  with  various  success,  till  the  date  of 
be  second  Genera!  Council,  held  A.D.  3S1,  at  Constan- 
lople,  when  tiie  resources  of  heretical  subtilty  being 
t  length  exhausted,  the  Arian  party  was  ejected  from 
be  Catholic  body,  and  formed  into  a  distinct  sect, 
xterior  to  it.  It  is  during  this  period,  while  it  ■ 
aintained  ils  hold  upon  the  creeds  and  Uic  g' 

2  The  Chtirch  of  AntiocJu       [chap.  i. 

ment  of  the  Church,  that  it  especially  invites  the 
attention  of  the  student  in  ecclesiastical  history. 
Afterwards,  Arianism  presents  nothing  new  in  its 
doctrine,  and  is  only  remarkable  as  becoming  the 
animating  principle  of  a  second  series  of  persecutions, 
when  the  barbarians  of  the  North,  who  were  infected 
with  it,  possessed  themselves  of  the  provinces  of  the 
Roman  Empire. 

The  line  of  history  which  is  thus  limited  by  the  two 
first  Ecumenical  Councils,  will  be  found  to  pass 
through  a  variety  of  others,  provincial  and  patriarchal, 
which  form  easy  and  intelligible  breaks  in  it,  and  pre- 
sent tb;-  heretical  doctrine  in  the  various  stages  of  its 
impiety.  These,  accordingly,  shall  be  taken  as  car- 
dinal points  for  our  narrative  to  rest  upon ; — and  it 
will  matter  little  in  the  result,  whether  it  be  called  a 
history  of  the  Councils,  or  of  Arianism,  between  the 
eras  already  marked  out. 

However,  it  is  necessary  to  direct  the  reader's  atten- 
tion in  the  first  place,  to  the  state  of  parties  and 
schools,  in  and  about  the  Church,  at  the  time  of  its 
rise,  and  to  the  sacred  doctrine  which  it  assailed,  m 
order  to  obtain  a  due  insight  into  the  history  of  the 
controversy  ;  and  the  discussions  which  these  subjects 
involve,  will  occupy  a  considerable  portion  of  the 
vblume.  I  shall  address  myself  without  delay  to  this, 
work ;  and,  in  this  chapter,  propose  first  to  obsei-ve 
upon  the  connexion  of  Arianism  with  the  Church  of 
Antioch,  and  upon  the  state  and  genius  of  that  Church 
in  primitive  times.  This  shall  be  the  subject  of  the 
present  section  :  in  those  which  follov/,  I  shall  consider 
its  relation  towards  the  heathen  philosophies  and 
heresies  then  prevalent ;  and  towards  the  Church  of 
Alexandria,  to  which,  thaugh  with  very  Uttle  show  of 

Tim  Chitrch  of  Antioch. 

reasoning,  it  is  often  referred.     The  consideration  of 
the    doctrine  of  the   Trinity   shall  form   the  second 
I  chapter. 

During  the  third  century,  the  Church  of  Antioch 
was  more  or  less  acknowledged  as  the  metropolis  of 
Syria,  Cilicia,  Phoenicia,  Comagene,  Osrhocne,  and 
Mesopotamia,  in  which  provinces  it  afterwards  held 
patriarchal  sway'.  It  had  been  the  original  centre  of 
Apostolical  missions  amongtheheathcn^;  and  claimed 
St.  Peter  himself  for  its  first  bishop,  who  had  been 
succeeded  by  Ignatius,  Thcophiius,  Babylas,  and  others 
of  sacred  memory  in  the  universal  Church,  as  cham- 
pions and  martyrF.  of  the  faith^.  The  secular  impor- 
tance of  the  city  added  to  the  influence  which  accrued 
to  it  from  the  religious  associations  thus  connected 
with  its  name,  especially  when  the  Emperors  made 
Syria  the  seat  of  their  government.  This  ancient  and 
celebrated  Church,  however,  is  painfully  conspicuous 
in  the  middle  of  the  century,  as  affording  so  open  a 
manifestation  of  the  spirit  of  Antichrist,  as  to  fulfil 
almost  lilerally  the  prophecy  of  the  Apostle  in  hi.s 
second  Epistle  to  the  Thessalonians*.  Paulus,  of 
Samosata,  who  was  raised  to  the  see  of  Antioch  not 
many  years  af^er  the  martyrdom  of  Babylas,  after 
Ibolding  the  episcopate  for  ten  years,  was  deposed  by 
fa  Council  of  eastern  bishops,  held  in  that  city  a.d. 
'  272.  on  the  ground  of  his  heretical  notions  concerning 
the  nature  of  Christ  His  original  calling  seems  to 
have  been  that  of  a  sophists  ;  how  he  obtained  admit- 

4  The  Church  of  Antioch.       [chap.  i. 

tance  into  the  clerical  order  is  unknown;  his  elevation, 
or  at  least  his  continuance  in  the  see,  he  owed  to  the 
celebrated  Zenobia^,  to  whom  his  literary  attainments, 
and  his  political  talents,  may  be  supposed  to  have 
recommended  him.  Whatever  were  the  personal  vir- 
tues of  the  Queen  of  the  East,  who  is  said  to  have 
been  a  Jewess  by  birth  or  creed,  it  is  not  surprising 
that  she  was  little  solicitous  for  the  credit  or  influence 
of  the  Christian  Church  within  her  dominions.  The 
character  of  Paulus  is  consigned  to  history  in  the 
Synodal  Letter  of  the  bishops,  written  at  the  time  of 
his  condemnation^ ;  which,  being  circulated  through 
the  Church,  might  fairly  be  trusted,  even  though  the 
high  names  of  Gregory  of  Neocaesarea  and  Firmilian 
were  not  found  in  the  number  of  his  judges.  He  is 
therein  charged  with  a  rapacity,  an  arrogance,  a  vulgar 
ostentation  and  desire  of  popularity,  an  extraordinary 
profaneness,  and  a  profligacy,  which  cannot  but  reflect 
seriously  upon  the  Church  and  clergy  which  elected, 
and  so  long  endured  him.  As  to  his  heresy,  it  is 
difficult  to  determine  what  were  his  precise  sentiments 
concerning  the  Person  of  Christ,  though  they  were 
certainly  derogatory  of  the  doctrine  of  His  absolute 
divinity  and  eternal  existence.  Indeed,  it  is  probable 
that  he  had  not  any  clear  view  on  the  solemn  subject 
on  which  he  allowed  himself  to  speculate ;  nor  had 
any  wish  to  make  proselytes,  and  form  a  party  in  the 

•  He  was  raised  to  the  episcopate  at  the  commencement  of  Odenatus's 
successes  against  Sapor  (Tillemont,  Mem.  vol.  iv.  Chronol.).  In  the 
years  which  followed,  he  held  a  civil  magistracy  with  his  ecclesiastical 
dignity;  in  the  temporalities  of  which,  moreover,  he  was  upheld  by 
Zenobia,  some  years  after  his  formal  deposition  by  the  neighboufing 
bishops.     (Basnag.  Annal.  a.d.  269,  §  6.) 

'  Euscb.  Hist.  vii.  30 

CliurcliS.  Ancient  writers  inform  us  that  his  heresy 
L  was  a  kind  of  Judaism  in  doctrine,  adopted  to  please 
I  his  Jewish  patroness^;  and,  if  originating  in  this 
motive,  it  was  not  Hkely  to  be  very  systematic  or  pro- 
found. His  habits,  too,  as  a  sophist,  would  dispose 
him  to  employ  himself  in  attacks  upon  the  Catholic 
doctrine,  and  in  irregular  discussion,  rather  than  in  the 
sijicere  effort  to  obtain  some  definite  conclusions,  to 
satisfy  his  own  mind  or  convince  others.  And  the 
supercilious  spirit,  which  the  Synodal  letter  describes 
as  leading  him  to  express  contempt  for  the  divines 
who  preceded  him  at  Antioch,  would  naturally  occa- 
sion incaution  in  his  theories,  and  a  carelessness  about 
guarding  them  from  inconsistencies,  even  where  he 
perceived  them.  Indeed,  the  Primate  of  Syria  had 
already  obtained  the  highest  post  to  which  ambition 
could  aspire,  and  had  nothing  to  labour  for ;  and 
I  having,  as  we  find,  additional  engagements  as  a  civil 
magistrate,  he  would  still  less  be  likely  to  covet  the 
barren  honours  of  an  heresiarch.  A  sect,  it  is  true, 
was  formed  upon  his  tenets,  and  called  after  his  name, 
and  has  a  place  in  ecclesiastical  history  till  the  middle 
of  the  fifth  century ;  but  it  never  was  a  considerable 
body,  and  even  as  early  as  the  date  of  the  Nicene 
Council  had  split  into  parties,  differing  by  various 
sfaades  of  heresy  from  the  orthodox  faith'.  We  shail 
■Jiave  a  more  correct   notion,  then,  of  the  heresy  of 

•  Mosheira,  dc  Bcb.  anie  Ginsi.  f  .(;.  r 
Paulus.  vide  Aihan.  Tr.  p,  i;;.] 

•  Alhan.  Epist.  ad  Monachos,  (  ;i.     Thei 
Jcttrn.  Horn.  7,  bui  Philasir.  Mar.  {  f>4,  sav^ 

>  TillenlDnt,  Mem.  toL  :;.  p.  i  tttM 

6  The  Church  of  Aiiiioch,       [chap.  i. 

Paulus,  if  we  consider  him  as  the  founder  of  a  school 
rather  than  of  a  sect,  as  encouraging  in  the  Church  the 
use  of  those  disputations  and  sceptical  inquiries,  which 
belonged  to  the  Academy  and  other  heathen  philoso- 
phies, and  as  scattering  up  and  down  the  seeds  of 
errors,  which  sprang  up  and  bore  fruit  in  the  genera- 
tion after  him.  In  confirmation  of  this  view,  which  is 
suggested  by  his  original  vocation,  by  the  temporal 
motives  which  are  said  to  have  influenced  him,  and  by 
his  inconsistencies,  it  may  be  observed,  that  his  inti- 
mate friend  and  fellow-countryman,  Lucian,  who 
schismatized  or  was  excommunicated  on  his  deposi- 
tion, held  heretical  tenets  of  a  diametrically  opposite 
nature,  that  is,  such  as  were  aftenvards  called  Semi- 
Arian,  Paulus  himself  advocating  a  doctrine  which 
nearly  resembled  what  is  commonly  called  the  Sa- 

More  shall  be  said  concerning  Paulus  of  Samosata 
presently ;  but  now  let  us  advance  to  the  history  of 
;his  Lucian,  a  man  of  learning^,  and  at  length  a 
martyr,  but  who  may  almost  be  considered  the  author 
of  Arianism.  It  is  very  common,  though  evidently 
illogical,  to  attribute  the  actual  rise  of  one  school  of 
opinion  to  another,  from  some  real  or  supposed  simi- 
larity in  their  respective  tenets.  It  is  thus,  for 
instance,  Platonism,  or  again,  Origenism,  has  been 
assigned  as  the  actual  source  from  which  Arianism 
was  derived.  Now,  Lucian's  doctrine  is  known  to 
have  been  precisely  the  same  as  that  species  of  Ari- 

'  He  was  distinguished  in  biblical  literature,  as  being  the  author  of  a 
third  edition  of  the  Septuagint.  Vide  Tillomont,  Mem.  vol.  v.  p.  202, 
203.     Du  Pin,  cent.  iii. 

SECT.  1.1 

The  Church  of  Aniiock. 


anism  afteiwards  called  Semi- A  nanism  3 ;  but  it  is  not 
on  that  account  that  I  here  trace  the  rise  of  Arianism 
to  Lucian.  There  is  an  historical,  and  not  merely  a 
iloctrinal  connexion  between  him  and  the  Arian  party. 
In  his  school  are  found,  in  matter  of  fact,  the  names 
of  most  of  the  original  advocates  of  Arianism,  and  all 
those  who  were  the  most  influential  in  their  respective 
Churches  throughout  the  East : — Arius  himself,  Euse- 
oiusof  Nicomedia,  Leontius,  Eudoxins,  Asterius,  and 
others,  who  will  be  familiar  to  us  in  the  sequel  ;  and 
these  men  actually  appealed  to  him  as  their  authority, 
and  adopted  from  him  tlic  party  designation  of  Collu- 
cianists''.  In  spite  of  this  undoubted  connexion 
between  Lucian  and  the  Arians,  we  might  be  tempted 
to  believe,  that  the  assertions  of  the  latter  concerning 
his  heterodoxy,  originated  in  their  wish  to  implicate 
man  of  high  character  in  the  censures  which  the 
rch  directed  against  themselves,  were  it  not  undc- 
ible,  that  during  the  times  of  the  three  bishops  who 
lessively  followed  Paulus,  Lucian  was  under  ex- 
conimunication.  The  Catholics  too,  are  silent  in  his 
vindication,  and  some  of  them  actually  admit  his 
unsoundness  in  faith^.  However,  ten  or  fifteen  years 
before    his    martyrdom,    he    was   reconciled   to  the 

■  Bull,  Baronius,  and  otheis,  mainUio  bis  onhodoi)'.  The  Scmi- 
Aiians  ajlopted  his  creed,  which  is  extanl.  Though  a  rHend,  at  it 
ji)ilMa(s.  uf  Paulas,  he  oppOKiI  ihe  SabclIIans  (by  >">'  *>'  whom  he  wal 
a!  Ifngth  bciiayed  lo  the  heathen  peisecuturs  of  the  Chuicb),  ami  this 
■ippuAilKin  WDuid  lead  him  to  incautious  slatcmcnts  of  an  Anan  tendency. 
Vtfte  belixr.  Section  i.  Epiphanias  (Ancor.  33)  tc1l«  us,  that  he  cuii- 
^dctcd  the  Word  id  the  Person  of  Christ  as  the  subsiiiuie  for  a  human 

•  Thcod.  Hist,  i,  J.  Epiph.  Usr.  Uix.(>.  Caic,  lloL  L.Uioi.  iiA.  L, 
p.  ta>. 

»  Tbwd.  Hi«.  i.  4. 

8  The  Church  of  Antioch,       [^ciiap.  i. 

Church ;  and  we  may  suppose  that  he  then  recanted 
whatever  was  heretical  in  his  creed  :  and  his  glorious 
end  was  allowed  to  wipe  out  from  the  recollection  of 
Catholics  of  succeeding  times  those  passages  of  his 
history,  which  nevertheless  were  so  miserable  in  their 
results  in  the  age  succeeding  his  own.  Chrysostom's 
panegyric  on  the  festival  of  his  martyrdom  is  still 
extant,  Ruffinus  mentions  him  in  honourable  terms, 
and  Jerome  praises  his  industry,  erudition,  and  elo- 
quence in  writing^. 

Such  is  the  historical  connexion  at  the  very  first 
sight  between  the  Arian  party  and  the  school  of  An- 
tioch7 :  corroborative  evidence  will  hereafter  appear, 
in  the  similarity  of  character  which  exists  between  the 
two  bodies.  At  present,  let  it  be  taken  as  a  confir- 
mation of  a  fact,  which  Lucian's  history  directly 
proves,  that  Eusebius  the  historian,  who  is  suspected 
of  Arianism,  and  his  friend  Paulinus  of  Tyre,  one  of 
its  first  and  principal  supporters,  though  not  pupils  of 
Lucian,  were  more  or  less  educated,  and  the  latter 
ordained  at  Antioch^ ;  while  in  addition  to  the  Arian 
bishops  at  Nicaea  already  mentioned,  Theodotus  of 
Laodicea,  Gregory  of  Berytus,  Narcissus  of  Neronias, 
and  two  others,  who  were  all  supporters  of  Arianism 
at  the  Council,  were  all  situated  within  the  ecclesias- 
tical influence,  and  some  of  them  in  the  vicinity  of 
Antioch^ ;  so  that  (besides  Arius  himself),  of  thirteen, 
who  according  to  Theodoret,  arianized  at  the  Council, 
nine  are  referable  to  the  Syrian  patriarchate.  If  we 
continue  the  history  of  the  controversy,  we  have  fresh 


«  Vide  Tillemont,  Mem.  vol.  v.         '  [Vide  Appendix,  Syrian  School,'] 
"  Vales,  de  Vit.  Euseb.  et  ad  Hist.  x.  i. 
•  Tillemont,  Mem.  vol.  vi.  p.  276. 

The  Church  of  AnHoch. 

■^evidence  of  the  connexion  between  Antioch  and  Ari- 
aotsm.  During  the  interval  between  the  Nicene 
Council  and  the  death  of  Constantius  (A.D.  325- — 361), 
Antioch  is  the  metropolis  of  the  heretical,  as  Alexan- 
dria of  the  orthodox  party.  At  Antioch,  the  heresy 
recommenced  its  attack  upon  the  Church  after  tlie 
decision  at  Niceea.  In  a  Council  held  at  Antioch,  it 
first  showed  itself  in  the  shape  of  S em i-A nanism, 
when  Lucian's  creed  was  produced.  There,  too,  in 
this  and  subsequent  Councils,  negotiations  on  the  doc- 
trine in  dispute  were  conducted  witJi  the  Western 
Church.  At  Antioch,  lastly,  and  at  Tjre,  a  suffragan 
see,  the  sentence  of  condemnation  ivas  pronounced 
upon  Athanasius. 

Hitherto  I  Itave  spoken  of  individuals  as  the  auUiora 
of  the  apostasy  which  is  to  engage  our  attention  in  the 
following  chapters ;  but  tliere  is  reason  to  fear  that 
men  like  Faulus  were  but  symptoms  of  a  corrupted 
state  of  the  Churcli.  The  history  of  the  times  gives 
us  sufiicicnt  evidence  of  the  luxuriousncss  of  Antiocli ; 
and  it  need  scarcely  be  said,  that  coldness  in  faith  is 
the  sure  consequence  of  relaxation  of  morals'.  Here, 
however,  passing  by  this  consideration,  which  is  too 
obvious  to  require  dwelling  upon,  I  would  rather  direct 
the  reader's  attention  to  the  particular  form  which  the 
Antiochene  corruptions  seem  to  have  assumed,  viz., 
^_.Stiat  of  Judaism^;  which  at  that  time,  it  must  be 

^^^^r*  [^4e  a  lemukablc  pasoage  in  Ongco.  on  ihc  pomp  trf  the  BUkji* 
^^^Hpbb  dar>  9oi>*c4  tr  Ncanilci,  ilie.  lol.  ii.  |i.  33a,  Bohn.] 
^^^^^  ^^Bpib,  dc  Efhiam.  S^r.  p,  64.  tiaca  die  litaal  imoprtullMi, 
^^^EUA  wat  Ot  cbajanciiaic  of  ihc  k±k»I  «i  Aniiodi,  i«  ihc  cunifil*  «( 

lo  The  Church  of  Antioch,       [chap.  i. 

recollected,  was  the  creed  of  an  existing  nation, 
acting  upon  the  Church,  and  not  merely,  as  at  this 
day,  a  system  of  opinions  more  or  less  discoverable 
among  professing  Christians. 

The  fortunes  of  the  Jewish  people  had  experienced 
a  favourable  change  since  the  reign  of  Hadrian.  The 
violence  of  Roman  persecution  had  been  directed 
against  the  Christian  Church  ;  while  the  Jews, 
gradually  recovering  their  strength,  and  obtaining 
permission  to  settle  and  make  proselytes  to  their 
creed,  at  length  became  an  influential  political  body 
in  the  neighbourhood  of  their  ancient  home,  especially 
in  the  Syrian  provinces  which  were  at  that  time  the 
chief  residence  of  the  court.  Severus  (A.D.  194)  is 
said  to  have  been  the  first  to  extend  to  them  the 
imperial  favour,  though  he  afterwards  withdrew  it. 
Heliogabalus,  and  Alexander,  natives  of  Syria,  gave 
them  new  privileges ;  and  the  latter  went  so  far  as  to 
place  the  image  of  Abraham  in  his  private  chapel, 
among  the  objects  of  his  ordinary  worship.  Philip 
the  Arabian  continued  towards  them  a  countenance, 
which  was  converted  into  an  open  patronage  m  "the 
reign  of  Zenobia.  During  the  Decian  persecution, 
they  had  been  sufficiently  secure  at  Carthage,  to 
venture  to  take  part  in  the  popular  ridicule  which  the 
Christians  excited  ;  and  they  are  even  said  to  have 
stimulated  Valerian  to  his  cruelties  towards  the 

But  this  direct  hostility  was  not  the  only,  nor  the 
most  formidable  means  of  harassing  their  religious 
enemies,  which  their  improving  fortunes  opened  upon 
them.     With  their  advancement   in  wealth   and   im- 

'  Basnage,  Hist,  dcs  Juifs,  vi.  I2«     Tillemont,  Hist,  des  Empcr.  iii.  iv. 

S6cT, !.]         Tltc  Church  of  Antioch. 

portance,   their    national    character    displayed    itself 
under  a  new   exterior.     The   morosencss   for  which 
they  were  previously  notorious,  in  great  measure  dis- 
appears with  their  dislodgment  from  the  soil  of  their 
ancestors  ;  and  on  their  re-appearance  as  settlers  in  a 
strange    land,    those    festive,    sclf-indulgcnt    habits, 
which,  in  earlier  times,  had  but  drawn  on  them  the 
animadversion  of  their  Prophets,   became   their  dis- 
tinguishing mark  in  the  eyes  of  external  observers'*. 
Manifisting   a    rancorous    malevolence   towards   the 
oalous  champions  of  the  Church,  they  courted  the 
I       Christian  populace  by  arts  adapted  to  captivate  and 
L    corrupt  the  unstable  and  worldly-minded.     Their  prc- 
^Mtnsions  to  magical  power  gained  them  credit  with  the 
^^MKrstitious,  to  whom  they  sold  amulets  for  the  cure 
^^■F  diseases ;    their    noisy    spectacles    attracted    the 
^^vuriosity  of  the  idle,  who  weakened  their  faith,  while 
thty  disgraced    their    profession,   by   attending   the 
worship  of  the  Synagogue.      Accordingly  there  was 
around  the  Church  a  mixed  multitude,  who, 
relinquishing   their   dependence   on   Christi- 
for  the   next   world,   sought   in    Judaism   the 
e  of  temporal  blessings,  and  a  more  accommo- 
rule  of  life  than  the  gospel  revealed.     Chrysos- 
ind  this  evil  so  urgent  at  Antioch  in  his  day.  as 
itemtpt  his  course  of  homilies  on  the  heresy  of  the 
>mceans,  in  order  to  direct  his  preaching  against 
seductions  to  which  his  hearers  were  then  exposed, 
return  of  the  Jewish  festivals*.     In   another 

b  Gibbtni,  HiM.  ch.  Kvi.  note  6.    Chiywu.  in  Juilon*.  i.  p.  386— 

.  in  laixoi.  i.  p  389,  «e-     jjooroc  ipcaks  M  a  law  nl 

12  The  Church  of  Antioch.         [chap.  i. 

part  of  the  empire,  the  Council  of  Illiberls  found  it 
necessary  to  forbid  a  superstitious  custom,  which  had 
been  introduced  among  the  country  people,  of  having 
recourse  to  the  Jews  for  a  blessing  on  their  fields. 
Afterwards,  Constantine  made  a  law  against  the  inter- 
marriage of  Jews  and  Christians ;  and  Constantius 
confiscated  the  goods  of  Christians  who  lapsed  to 
Judaism^.  These  successive  enactments  may  be 
taken  as  evidence  of  the  view  entertained  by  the 
Church  of  her  own  danger,  from  the  artifices  of  the 
Jews.  Lastly,  the  attempt  to  rebuild  the  temple  in 
Julian's  reign,  was  but  the  renewal  of  a  project  on 
their  part,  which  Constantine  had  already  frustrated, 
for  reinstating  their  religion  in  its  ancient  ritual  and 
•country  7. 

Such  was  the  position  of  the  Jews  towards  the 
primitive  Church,  especially  in  the  patriarchate  of 
Antioch  ;  which,  I  have  said,  was  their  principal  place 
of  settlement,  and  was  at  one  time  under  the  civil 
government  of  a  Judaizing  princess,  the  most  illus- 
trious personage  of  her  times,  who  possessed  influence 
enough  over  the  Christian  body  to  seduce  the  Metro- 
politan himself  from  the  orthodox  faith. 

But  the  evidence  of  the  existence  of  Judaism,  as  a 
system,  in  the  portion  of  Christendom  in  question,  is 

^  Bingham,  Antiq.  xvi.  6.     Basnage,  Hist,  des  Juifs,  vi.  14. 

7  Chrysost,  in  Judaeos,  iii.  p.  435.     [Vide  Chrysost.  in  Matth.  Horn, 43, 
where  he  says  that  in  Julian's  time,  "  they  ranged  themselves  with  the 
heathen  and  courted  their  party."     He  proceeds  to  say  that  "  in  all  their 
other  evil  works  they  surpass  their  predecessors,  in  sorceries,  magic  arts, 
impurities.*'     Oxford  TransL] 

.  I.]         Tiu  Ckitrck  of  Antioch. 

contained  in  a  circumstance  which  deserves  oui  par- 
ticular attention  ;  the  adoption,  in  those  parts,  of  tht- 
quarto  deciman  rule  of  obsei-ving  Easter,  when  it  was 
on  the  point  of  being  discontinued  in  the  Churches  of 
Proconsular  Asia,  where  it  had  first  prevailed. 

It  is  well  known  that  at  the  close  of  the  second 
century,  a  controversy  arose  between  Victor,  Bishop 
of  Rome,  and  Polycratcs,  Bishop  of  Ephesus,  con- 
cerning the  proper  time  for  celebrating  the  Easter 
feast,  or  rather  for  terminating  the  ante-paschal  fast. 
At  that  time  the  whole  of  Christendom,  with  the 
exception  of  Proconsular  Asia  (a  district  of  about 
two  hundred  miles  by  fifty),  and  its  immediate  neigh- 
bourhoodS,  continued  the  fast  on  to  the  Sunday  after 
the  Jewish  Passover,  whicli  they  kept  as  Easter  Day 
as  we  do  now,  in  order  that  the  weekly  and  yearly 
commemorations  of  the  Resurrection  might  coincide. 
But  the  Christians  of  the  Proconsulate,  guided  by 
Jewish  custom,  ended  tlie  fast  on  the  very  day  of 
the  paschal  sacrifice,  without  regarding  the  actual 
place  held  in  the  week  by  the  feast,  which  imme- 
diately followed;  and  were  accordingly  called  Quarto- 
decimans^,  Victor  felt  the  inconvenience  of  this 
M-ant  of  uniformity  in  the  celebration  of  the  chief 
Christian  festival ;  and  was  urgent,  even  far  beyond 
tlie  bounds  of  charity,  and  the  rights  of  his  see,  in  his 
endeavour  to  obtain  the  compliance  of  the  Asiatics. 
I'olycrates,  who  M'as  primate  of  the  Ouarto-deciman 
Churches,  defended  their  peculiar  custom  by  a  state- 
ment which  is  plain  and  unexceptionable.  They  had 
received  llieir  rule,  he   said,  from  St  John   aiid  St. 

•  Eusct.  Hisr  V.  13-- ij,  anil  ValcE.  a 

•  ExhI.  X".  6.     Vidt  TillLmunl,  SItm, 

14  The  Church  of  Antioch.         [chap.  I. 

Philip  the  Apostles,  Polycarp  of  Smyrna,  Melito  of 
Sardis,  and  others ;  and  deemed  it  incumbent  on 
them  to  transmit  as  they  had  received.  There  was 
nothing  Judaistic  in  this  conduct ;  for,  though  the 
Apostles  intended  the  Jewish  discipline  to  cease  with 
those  converts  who  were  born  under  it,  yet  it  was  by 
no  means  clear,  that  its  calendar  came  under  the 
proscription  of  its  rites.  On  the  other  hand,  it  was 
natural  that  the  Asian  Churches  should  be  affection- 
ately attached  to  a  custom  which  their  first  founders, 
and  they  inspired  teachers,  had  sanctioned. 

But  the  case  was  very  different,  when  Churches, 
which  had  for  centuries  observed  the  Gentile  rule, 
adopted  a  custom  which  at  the  time  had  only  exis- 
tence among  the  Jews.  The  Quarto-decimans  of  the 
Proconsulate  had  come  to  an  end  by  A.D.  276 ;  and, 
up  to  that  date,  the  Antiochene  provinces  kept  their 
Easter  feast  in  conformity  with  the  Catholic  usage' ; 
yet,  at  the  time  of  the  Nicene  Council  (fifty  years 
afterwards),  we  find  the  Antiochenes  the  especial  and 
solitary  champions  of  the  Jewish  rule 2.  We  can 
scarcely  doubt  that  they  adopted  it  in  imitation  of  the 
Jews  who  were  settled  among  them,  who  are  known 
to  have  influenced  them,  and  who  about  that  very 
date,  be  it  observed,  had  a  patroness  in  Zenobia,  and, 
what  was  stranger,  had  almost  a  convert  in  the  person 
of  the  Christian  Primate.  There  is  evidence,  more- 
over, of  the  actual  growth  of  the  custom  in  the 
Patriarchate  at  the  end  of  the  third  century ;  which 

*  Tillemont,  Mem.  vol.  iii.  p.  48,  who  conjectures  that  Anatolius  of 
Laodicea  was  the  author  of  the  change.  But  changes  require  predispos- 
ing causes. 

•  Athan.  ad  Afros,  {  3. 

SECT.  I.]         The  Church  of  Antioch. 

well  agrees  with  the  hypothesis  of  its  being  an  iiino- 
x^ation,  and  not  founded  on  ancient  usage.  And  again 
{as  was  natural,  supposing  the  change  to  begin  at 
Antioch),  at  the  date  of  the  Nicene  Council,  it  was 
established  only  in  tlie  Syrian  Churches,  and  was  but 
making  its  way  with  incomplete  success  in  the  ex- 
tremities of  the  Patriarchate.  In  Mesopotamia, 
Audius  began  his  schism  with  the  characteristic  of 
the  Quarto-deciman  rule,  just  at  the  date  of  the 
Council^ ;  and  about  the  same  time,  Cilicia  was  con- 
tested between  the  two  parties,  as  I  gather  from  the 
conflicting  statements  of  Constantine  and  Athanasius, 
that  it  did,  and  that  it  did  not,  conform  to  the  Gentile 
custom''.  By  the  same  time,  the  controversy  had 
reached  Egypt  also.  Epiphanius  refers  to  a  celebrated, 
contest,  now  totally  unknown,  between  one  Crescentius 
and  Alexander,  the  first  defender  of  the  Catholic  faith 
against  Arianism^. 

It  is  true  that  there  was  a  third  Quarto-deciman 
school,  lying  geographically  between  the  Proconsulate 
anrt  Antioch,  which  at  first  sight  mii^ht  seem  to  have 
been  the  medium  by  which  the  Jewish  custom  was 
conveyed  on  from  the  former  to  the  latter;  but  there 
is  no  evidence  of  its  existence  till  the  end  of  the  fourth 
century.  In  order  to  complete  my  account  of  the 
Quarto-decimans,  and  show  more  fully  their  relation 
to  the  Judaizers,  I  will  here  make  mention  of  it  ; 
though,  in  doing  so,  I  must  somewhat  digress  from 
the  main  subject  under  consideration. 

.     •  Epiph.  H«r.  Ixi.  I  I.       . 

•  AthHn.  ait  Afios.  tupia.  Siicr.  Hisl.  i.  i>,  where,  by  Ihc  bjr,  (ho 
PrOConiulMe  i«  tp.ikrn  uf  ai  confaimlng  (o  the  gcneial  u«a{|;e)  sou 
rileailj'  l<>  rii«lingui^h  bclicceo  fh;  liro  Quajta-Hcciman  schooU. 

*  Epiph.  ibid,  i  g. 

1 6  The  Church  of  Antioch.         [chap.  i. 

.  The  portion  of  Asia  Minor,  lying  between  the  Pro- 
consulate and  the  river  Halys,  may  be  regarded,  in 
the  Ante-Nicene  times,  as  one  country,  comprising 
the  provinces  of  Phrygia,  Galatia,  Cappadocia,  and 
Paphlagonia,  afterwards  included  within  the  Exarchate 
of  Caesarea ;  and  was  then  marked  by  a  religious 
character  of  a  peculiar  cast.  Socrates,  speaking  of 
this  district,  informs  us,  that  its  inhabitants  were  dis- 
tinguished above  other  nations  by  a  strictness  and 
seriousness  of  manners,  having  neither  the  ferocity  of 
the  Scythians  and  Thracians,  nor  the  frivolity  and 
sensuality  of  the  Orientals^.  The  excellent  qualities, 
however,  implied  in  this  description,  were  tarnished 
by  the  love  of  singularity,  the  spirit  of  insubordination 
and  separatism,  and  the  gloomy  spiritual  pride  which 
their  history  evidences.  St.  Paul's  Epistle  furnishes  us 
with  the  first  specimen  of  this  unchristian  temper,  as 
evinced  in  the  conduct  of  the  Galatians7,  who,  dis- 
satisfied with  the  exact  evangelical  doctrine,  aspired 
to  some  higher  and  more  availing  system  than  the 
Apostle  preached  to  them.  What  the  Galatians  were 
in  the  first  century,  Montanus  and  Novatian  became 
in  the  second  and  third  ;  both  authors  of  a  harsh  and 
arrogant  discipline,  both  natives  of  the  country  in 
question^,  and  both  meeting  with  special  success  in 
that  country,  although  the  schism  of  the  latter  was 
organized  at  Rome,  of  which  Church  he  was  a  pres- 
byter. It  was,  moreover,  the  peculiarity,  more  or  less, 
of  both  Montanists  and  Novatians  in  those  parts,  to 
differ   from   the  general    Church  as   to   the   time  of 

•  Socrat.  Hist.  iv.  28,  cf,  Epiph.  Haer.  xlviii.  14  [and  xlvii.  i]. 

"^  [Jerome  calls  the  Galatians  **  ad  intelligentiam  tardiores,  vecordes," 
and  speaks  of  their  **  stoliditas  barbara,"  in  Galat.  lib,  ii.  prfff.] 

*  Vnl.s,  ad  loc.  Sccr.    [Philoxtorg.  viii.  15.] 

«cr.  I.]         The  Church  of  AntiocL  ty 

observing  Easter^;  whereas,  neither  in  Africa  nor  in 
:  did  the  hvo  sects  dissent  from  the  received 
What  was  the  principle  or  origin  of  this 
^ularitj',  does  not  clearly  appear ;  unless  we  may 
rtsidcr  as  characteristic,  what  seems  to  be  the  fact, 
i  when  their  neighbours  of  the  Proconsulate  were 
iiarto-decimans,  they  (in  the  words  of  Socrates) 
^rank  from  feasting  on  the  Jewish  festival^,"  and 
iter  tlie  others  had  conformed  to  the  Gentile  rule, 
r,  on  thecontrary, openly  judaized3.  Tiiischange 
m  their  practice,  which  took  place  at  the  end  of  the 
fourtli  century,  was  mainly  effected  by  a  Jew,  of  the 
name  of  Sabbatius,  who  becoming  a  convert  to  Chris- 
tianity, rose  to  the  episcopate  in  the  Novatian  Church. 
Sozomen,  in  giving  an  account  of  the  transaction, 
observes  that  it  was  a  national  custom  with  the 
Galatians  and  Phrygians  to  judaize  in  their  observance 
of  Easter.  Coupling  this  remark  with  Eusebius's 
niention  of  Churches  in  the  neighbourhood  of  the 
Proconsulate,  as  included  among  the  Ouarto-dccimans 
whom  Victor  condemned"*,  we  may  suspect  that  the 
pcr^'erse  spirit  which  St.  Paul  reproves  in  his  Epistle, 
and  which  we  have  been  tracing  in  its  Montanistic 
3id  Novatian  varieties,  still  lurked  in  those  parts  in 
•Is  Original  judaizing  form,  till  after  a  course  of  years 
•'  Was  accidentally  brought  out  by  circumstancci 
"pon  the  public  scene  of  ecclesiastical  history.  If 
lurther   evidence  of  the   connexion   of  the   Quarto- 

P*  Bocrai.  Mist  v.  > 
f'  TertoU.  de  Jejuii.  14,     Valra.  ad  Sozom.  * 
?  Valenui  ad.  Inc.  applies  ihis  dlfTerenity. 

1 8  The  Cktcrch  of  Antioch.        [chap,  l 

deciman  usage  with  Judaism  be  required,  I  may  refer 
to  Constantine's  Nicene  Edict,  which  forbids  it,  among 
other  reasons,  on  the  ground  of  its  being  Jewish^. 

The  evidence,  which  has  been  adduced  for  the  exis- 
tence of  Judaism  in  the  Church  of  Antioch,  is  not 
without  its  bearing  upon  the  history  of  the  rise  of 
Arianism.  I  will  not  say  that  the  Arian  doctrine  is 
the  direct  result  of  a  judaizing  practice ;  but  it 
deserves  consideration  whether  a  tendency  to  dero- 
gate from  the  honour  due  to  Christ,  was  not  created 
by  an  observance  of  the  Jewish  rites,  and  much  more, 
by  that  carnal,  self-indulgent  religion,  which  seems  at 
that  time  to  have  prevailed  in  the  rejected  nation. 
When  the  spirit  and  morals  of  a  people  are  materially 
debased,  varieties  of  doctrinal  error  spring  up,  as  if 
self-sown,  and  are  rapidly  propagated.  While  Judaism 
inculcated  a  superstitious,  or  even  idolatrous  depen- 
dence on  the  mere  casualties  of  daily  life,  and  gave 
license  to  the  grosser  tastes  of  human  nature,  it 
necessarily  indisposed  the  mind  for  the  severe  and 
unexciting  mysteries,  the  large  indefinite  promises, 
and  the  remote  sanctions,  of  the  Catholic  faith ;  which 
fell  as  cold  and  uninviting  on  the  depraved  imagina- 
tion, as  the  doctrines  of  the  Divine  Unity  and  of 
implicit  trust  in  the  unseen  God,  on  the  minds  of  the 
early  Israelites.  Those  who  were  not  constrained 
by  the  message  of  mercy,  had  time  attentively  to 
consider  the  intellectual  difficulties  which  were  the 
medium  of  its  communication,  and  heard  but  "  a  hard 
saying  "  in  what  was  sent  from  heaven  as  **  tidings  of 

*  'nieod.  Hist.  i.  lo. 

great  joy."  "  The  mind,"  says  Hooker,  "  feeling 
fHracnt  joy,  is  always  marvellously  unwilling  to  admit 
any  other  cogitation,  and  in  that  case,  casteth  off 
those  disputes  wiiereunto  the  intellectual  part  at  other 
times  easily  draweth,  ,  .  The  people  that  are  said  in 
the  sixth  of  John  to  have  gone  after  our  Lord  to 
Capernaum  .  ,  leaving  Him  on  the  one  side  of  the 
sea  of  Tiberias,  and  finding  Him  again  as  soon  as 
ihey  tlicmselves  by  ship  were  arrived  on  the  contrary 
sitie  .  ,  as  they  wondered,  so  they  asked  also,  '  Rabbi, 
when  earnest  Thou  hither?'  The  Disciples,  when 
Christ  appeared  to  them  in  a  far  more  strange  and 
miraculous  manner,  moved  no  question,  but  rejoiced 
greatly  in  what  they  saw  .  .  The  one,  because  they 
enjoyed  not,  disputed ;  the  other  disputed  not,  because 
they  enjoyed^-" 

It  is  also  a  question,  whether  the  mere  performance 
of  the  rites  of  the  Law,  of  which  Christ  came  as  anti- 
type and  repealer,  iias  not  a  tendency  to  withdraw  the 
•nind  from  the  contemplation  of  the  more  glorious  antj 
real  images  of  the  Gospel ;  so  that  the  Christians  of 
Antioch  would  diminish  their  reverence  towards  the 
tnie  Saviour  of  man,  in  proportion  as  they  trusted  to 
"■e  media  of  worship  provided  for  a  time  by  thp 
Mosaic  ritual.  It  is  this  consideration  which  ac> 
counts  for  the  energy  with  which  the  great  Apostle 
^<*tnbats  the  adoption  of  the  Jewish  ordinances  by 
"W  Christians  of  Galatia,  and  which  might  seem 
~  ssive,  till  vindicated  by  events  subsequent  to  his 
In  the   Epistle  addressed  to  them,  the 

20  Tfie  Church  of  Antioch.        [chaI?.  I. 

Judaizcrs  are  described  as  men  labouring  under  an 
irrational  fascination,  fallen  from  grace,  and  self- 
excluded  from  the  Christian  privileges^ ;  when  in 
appearance  they  were  but  using,  what  on  the  one 
hand  might  be  called  mere  external  forms,  and  on 
the  other,  had  actually  been  delivered  to  the  Jews  on 
Divine  authority.  Some  light  is  thrown  upon  the 
subject  by  the  Epistle  to  the  Hebrews,  in  which  it  is 
implied  throughout,  that  the  Jewish  rites,  after  their 
Antitype  was  come,  did  but  conceal  from  the  eye  of 
faith  His  divinity,  sovereignty,  and  all-sufficiency.  If 
we  turn  to  the  history  of  the  Church,  we  seem  to  see 
the  evils  in  actual  existence,  which  the  Apostle  antici- 
pated in  prophecy;  that  is,  we  see,  that  in  the  obsolete 
furniture  of  the  Jewish  ceremonial,  there  was  in  fact 
retained  the  pestilence  of  Jewish  unbelief,  tending 
(whether  directly  or  not,  at  least  eventually)  to  intro- 
duce fundamental  error  respecting  the  Person  of  Christ 
Before  the  end  of  the  first  century,  this  result  is 
disclosed  in  the  system  of  the  Cerinthians  and  the 
Ebionites.  These  sects,  though  more  or  less  infected 
with  Gnosticism,  were  of  Jewish  origin,  and  observed 
the  Mosaic  Law ;  and  whatever  might  be  the  minute 
peculiarities  of  their  doctrinal  views,  they  also  agreed 
in  entertaining  Jewish  rather  than  Gnostic  conceptions 
of  the  Person  of  Christ^.  Ebion,  especially,  is  charac- 
terised by  his  Humanitarian  creed ;  while  on  the  other 
hand,  his  Judaism  was  so  notorious,  that  Tertullian 
does  not  scruple  to  describe  him  as  virtually  the  object 
of  the  Apostle's  censure  in  his  Epistle  to  the  Gala- 

■  Socrat.  Hist.  v.  M. 

•  Burton,  Bamp.  Lect,  notes  74.  82. 

^  TertuU  de  Prapscrlpt.  Haeret.  c.  33,  p.  443# 

SECT.  1-3         The  Church  of  Aiiiiofh. 

The  Nazarencs  are  next  to  be  noticed  ; — not  for  the 
influence  they  exercised  on  the  belief  of  Christians. 
but  as  evidencing,  with  the  sects  just  mentioned,  the 
latent  connection  between  a  jiidaizing  discipline  and 
heresy  in  doctrine.  Who  tliey  were,  and  what  their 
lenels,  has  been  a  subject  of  much  controversy.  It  is 
suflicient  for  my  purpose — and  so  far  is  undoubted — 
that  they  were  at  the  same  time  "zealous  of  the  Law" 
and  uniound  in  their  theology^ ;  and  this  without 
being  related  to  the  Gnostic  families  :  a  circumstance 
which  establishes  them  as  a  more  cogent  evidence 
of  the  real  connexion  of  ritual  with  doctrinal  Judaism 
than  is  furnished  by  the  mixed  theologies  of  Ebion 
and  Cerinthus',  It  is  worth  observing  that  their 
declension  from  orthodoxy  appears  to  have  been 
gradual;  Epiphanius  is  the  first  writer  who  includes 
them  by  name  in  the  number  of  heretical  sects*. 

*  Bunon,  Bompt.  Lcci.,  nute  S\. 

*  For  the  curiouE  in  ecclcsiaslical  antiquity,  Mosheim  has  elicited  the 
lOUowiDg:  account  of  Ihcir  name  and  sect  (Mosheim  6c  Heb.  Christ,  ante 
Conslant,  Sa-cul.  ii.  {  ,^8,  311].  llie  title  of  Nazarene  he  considers  la 
have  originally  belonged  to  the  body  of  Jewish  converts,  taken  by  them 
with  a  refermce  10  Matt,  ii.  ij,  while  the  Gtnlilcs  at  Anlioch  assumed  the 
Greek  appellation  of  Christians.  As  ihe  Mosaic  ordinances  gradually  it:U 
IMo  disuse  among'  the  former,  in  process  of  time  it  became  the  peculiar 
dcsjgnaiian  of  (he  Chun:h  of  Jfrusalem  ;  and  (hat  Church  in  lum  ihrow- 
ing  off  its  Jevrish  exterior  in  the  reign  of  Hadrian,  on  being  unfairly 
witrjarlfd  lu  the  disabilities  then  laid  upon  the  rebel  nation,  it  finally 
settled  upon  (he  scanty  rcmnonli  who  Considered  their  ancient  ceremotiial 
la  be  an  esaenlial  part  of  their  present  profession.  These  Judaiirrs,  from 
an  ovcr-aliachmcni  lo  ihe  forms,  proceeded  in  coarse  of  (ime,  (0  imbibe 
die  «piri(  of  the  degenerate  system:  and  ended  in  docltiiial  views  no(  far 
abort  of  modem  Socininnlsm. 

*  Buit.>u,  Bampi.  Uct„  note  84.  Considering  the  Judaism  of  the 
Quar(D-decimans  after  \'ictor's  age,  rs  Ic  imptissible  ihat  he  may  luive 
sutpccted  thai  (he  old  leaven  was  infecting  the  C'luiehea  of  Asia .'    This 

2  2  The  C/mrc/i  of  Aniioch.        [chap,  f'^ 


Such  arc  the  instances  of  the  connexion  between 
Judaism  and  theological  error,  previously  to  the  age  of 
Paulus,  who  still  more  strikingly  exemplifies  it.  First, 
we  are  in  possession  of  his  doctrinal  opinions,  which 
are  grossly  humanitarian  ;  next  we  find,  that  in  early 
times  they  were  acknowledged  to  be  of  Jewish  origin  ; 
further,  that  his  ceremonial  Judaism  also  was  so 
notorious  that  one  author  even  affirms  that  he 
observed  the  rite  of  circumcision^  :  and  lastly,  just 
after  his  day  we  discover  the  rise  of  a  Jewish  usage, 
the  Quarto-deciman,  in  the  provinces  of  Christendom, 
immediately  subjected  to  his  influence. 

It  may  be  added  that  this  view  of  the  bearing  of 
Judaism  upon  the  sceptical  school  afterwards  called 
Arian  is  countenanced  by  frequent  passages  in  the 
writings  of  the  contemporary  Fathers,  on  which  no 
stress,  perhaps,  could  fairly  be  laid,  were  not  their 

will  explain  and  partly  excuse  his  earnestness  in  the  controversy  with 
them.  It  must  be  recollected  that  he  witnessed,  in  his  own  branch  of  the 
Church,  the  rise  of  the  first  simply  humanitarian  school  which  Chris- 
tianity had  seen,  that  of  Theodotus,  Artemas,  &c.  (Euseb.  Hist.  v.  28), 
the  latter  of  whom  is  charged  by  Alexander  with  reviving  the  heresy  of 
the  judaizing  Ebion  (Theod.  Hist.,  i.  4) ;  [while  at  the  same  time  at 
Rome  Blastus  was  introducing  the  Quarto-deciman  rule].  Again,  Theo- 
dotus, Montanus,  and  Praxeas,  whose  respective  heresies  he  was  engaged 
In  combating,  all  belonged  to  the  neighbourhood  of  the  Proconsulate, 
where  there  seems  to  have  been  a  school,  from  which  Praxeas  derived  his 
heresy  (Theod.  Haer.  iii.  3) ;  while  Montanism,  as  its  after  history  shows, 
contained  in  it  the  seeds,  both  of  the  Quarto-deciman  and  Sabellian  errors 
(Tillemont,  Mem.  vol.  ii.  p.  199.205.  Athan.  in  Arian.  ii.  43).  It  may 
be  added  that  the  younger  Theodotus  is  suspected  of  Montanism  (Tille- 
mont. Mem.  vol.  iii.  p.  277). 

'  Philastr.  Ha?r.  §  64.  [Epiphanius  denies  that  the  Paulianists  circum- 
cised. Haer.  Ixv.  2.  It  is  remarkable  that  the  Arian  Whiston  looked  favour- 
ably  on  the  rite.     Biograph.  Brit.  p.  4213*] 



The  Cimrch  o/Aniioch. 



interpreted  by  the  above  historical  facts'', 
loreover,  in  the  popular  risings  which  took-  place  in 
itioch  and  Alexandria  in  favour  of  Arianism,  the 
sided  with  the  heretical  party^;  evincing  thereby, 
indeed  any  definite  interest  in  the  subject  of 
dispute,  but  a  sort  of  spontaneous  feeling,  that  the 
side  of  heresy  was  their  natural  position  ;  and  further, 
it  its  spirit,  and  the  character  which  it  created, 
re  congenial  to  their  own.  Or,  again,  if  we  con- 
tbj'ect  from  a  different  point  of  view,  and 
omitting  dates  and  schools,  take  a  general  survey  of 
Christendom  during  the  first  centuries,  we  shall  find 
it  divided  into  the  same  two  parties,  both  on  the  Arian 
and  the  Quarto-deciman  questions  ;  Rome  and  Alex- 
andria with  their  dependencies  being  the  champions  of 
the  Catholic  tradition  in  either  controversy,  and 
Palestine.  Syria,  and  Asia  Minor,  being  the  strong- 
holds of  the  opposition.  And  these  are  the  two 
questions  which  occasioned  the  deliberations  of  the 
Nicene  Fathers. 

However,  it  is  of  far  less  consequence,  as  it  is  less 
certain,  whether  Arianism  be  of  Jewish  origin,  than 
whether  it  arose  at  Antioch  :  which  is  the  point  prin- 
cipally insisted  on  in  the  foregoing  pages.  For  in 
proportion  as  it  is  traced  to  Antioch,  so  is  the  charge 
of  originating  it  removed  from  the  great  Alexandrian 
School,  upon  which  various  enemiesof  our  Apostolical 
Church  have  been  eager  to  fasten  it  In  corroboration 
what  has  been  said  above  on  this  subject,  1  here  add 
words  of  Alexander,  in  his  letter  to  the  Church  of 

«rm.i.  i;:  Soiimi.  Dlonys.  3.4 ;  ad  Epiic.  ^g.  iji  de 
Arisa.  ui.  17.  and  paum.     Chiysim.  Horn-  io  AnomiruK  alil 

Thcod.  His.  i.  4.    Epiphan.  Hai.  IxU.  79, 
^  HbL  dcs  Juib,  <i.  41. 

24  The  Church  of  Aiitioch,        [chap.  I, 

Constantinople,  at  the  beginning  of  the  controversy ; 
which  are  of  themselves  decisive  in  evidence  of  the 
part,  which  Antioch  had,  in  giving  rise  to  the  detest- 
able blasphemy  which  he  was  combating. 

"  Ye  are  not  ignorant,"  he  writes  to  the  Constanti- 
nopolitan  Church  concerning  Arianism,  "that  this 
rebellious  doctrine  belongs  to  Ebion  and  Artemas, 
and  is  in  imitation  of  Paulus  of  Samosata,  Bishop 
of  Antioch,  who  was  excommunicated  by  the  sentence 
of  the  Bishops  assembled  in  Council  from  all  quarters. 
Paulus  was  succeeded  by  Lucian,  who  remained  in 
separation  for  many  years  during  the  time  of  three 
bishops.  .  .  .  Our  present  heretics  have  drunk  up  the 
dregs  of  the  impiety  of  these  men,  and  are  their 
secret  offspring ;  Arius  and  Achillas,  and  their  party 
of  evil-doers,  incited  as  they  are  to  greater  excesses 
by  three  Syrian  prelates,  who  agree  with  them  .  .  . 
Accordingly,  they  have  been  expelled  from  the 
Church,  as  enemies  of  the  pious  Catholic  teaching  ; 
according  to  St.  Paul's  sentence,  *  If  any  man  preach 
any  other  Gospel  unto  you  than  that  ye  have  received, 
let  him  be  anathema^/  " 

•  Theod.  Hist.  1.4.  [Simeon,  Bishop  of  Beth-Arsam,  in  Persia,  a.d. 
510 — 525,  traces  the  genealogy  of  Paulianism  and  Npstorianisra  from 
Judaism  thus ; — Caiaphas  to  Simon  Magus  ;  Simon  to  Ebion  ;  Ebion  to 
Artemon  ;  Artemon  to  Paul  of  Somosata ;  Paul  to  Diodorus  ;  Diodorus  to 
ITicodorc ;  Thcodort  to  Nestorius.    Asseraan.  Bibl.  Orient,  t.  i.  p.  347.] 



As  Antiocli  was  the  birth-place,  so  were  the  Scliools 
of  the  Sophists  the  place  of  education  of  the  heretical 
spirit  which  \vc  arc  considering.  In  this  section,  I 
propose  to  show  its  disputatious  character,  and  to 
refer  it  to  these  Schools  as  the  source  of  it. 

The  vigour  of  the  first  movement  of  tlie  heresy,  and 
the  rapid  extension  of  the  controversy  which  it  intro- 
duced, are  among  the  more  remarkable  circumstances 
connected  with  its  history.  In  the  course  of  six  years 
it  called  for  the  interposition  of  a  General  Council ; 
though  of  three  hundred  and  eighteen  bishops  there 
assembled,  only  twenty-two,  on  the  largest  calculation 
and,  as  it  really  appears,  only  thirteen,  were  after  all 
found  to  be  its  supporters.  Though  thus  condemned 
b>'  the  whole  Christian  world,  in  a  few  years  it  broke 
out  again  ;  secured  the  patronage  of  the  imperial 
court,  which  had  recently  been  converted  to  the 
Christian  faith ;  made  its  way  into  the  highest 
dignities  of  the  Church  ;  presided  at  her  Councils, 
tyrannized   over  the  majority  of  her  member* 

ho  were  orthodox  believers. 

.  doabllev  

found  in  t>>^  ''  ^^I^Lucian's  pupata  i 

26  Tlie  Sclwols  of  the  Sophists,     [chap.  i. 

brought  together  from  so  many  different  places,  and 
were  promoted  to  posts  of  influence  in  so  many  parts 
of  the  Church.  Thus  Eusebius,  Maris,  and  Theognis, 
were  bishops  of  the  principal  sees  of  Bithynia  ;  Meno- 
phantes  was  exarch  of  Ephesus  ;  and  Eudoxius  was 
one  of  the  Bishops  of  Comagene.  Other  causes  will 
hereafter  appear  in  the  secular  history  of  the  day ;  but 
here  I  am  to  speak  of  their  talent  for  disputation,  to 
which  after  all  they  were  principally  indebted  for 
their  success. 

It  is  obvious,  that  in  every  contest,  the  assailant,  as 
such,  has  the  advantage  of  the  party  assailed  ;  and 
that,  not  merely  from  the  recommendation  which 
novelty  gives  to  his  cause  in  the  eyes  of  bystanders, 
but  also  from  the  greater  facility  in  the  nature  of 
things,  of  finding,  than  of  solving  objections,  whatever 
be  the  question  in  dispute.  Accordingly,  the  skill  of 
a  disputant  mainly  consists  in  securing  an  offensive 
position,  fastening  on  the  weaker  points  of  his  adver- 
sary's case,  and  then  not  relaxing  his  hold  till  the 
latter  sinks  under  his  impetuosity,  without  having  the 
opportunity  to  display  the  strength  of  his  own  cause, 
and  to  bring  it  to  bear  upon  his  opponent ;  or,  to 
make  use  of  a  familiar  illustration,  in  causing  a  sudden 
run  upon  his  resources,  which  the  circumstances  of 
time  and  place  do  not  allow  him  to  meet.  This  was 
the  artifice  to  which  Arianism  owed  its  first  successes'. 
It  owed  them  to  the  circumstance  of  its  being  (in  its 
original  form)    a   sceptical   rather  than   a   dogmatic 

*  di'ttTnySoxn   yap   a>s    XucrtD/r^pc?    kwcs   ci9    €)(Opwv  afJLwav, 
Epiph.  Hser.  Ixix.  15.     Vide  the  whole  passage. 

SECT,  n.]     Tlie  Schools  of  the  Sophists. 

I        lead 



teaching  ;  to  its  proposing  to  inquire  into  and  reform 
"le  received  creed,  rather  than  to  hazard  one  of  its 
The  heresies  which  preceded  it,  originating  in 
ibtle   and   dexterous   talent,   took   up   a   false 
position,  professed  a  theory,  and  sunk  under  the  obli- 
gations which  it  involved.     The  monstrous  dogmas  of 
.the  various  Gnostic  sects  pass  away  from  the  scene  of 
itory  as  fast  as  they  enter  it.     Sabellianism,  which 
;eded,  also  ventured  on  a  creed  ;  and  vacillating 
een  a  similar  wildness  of  doctrine,  and  a  less 
[posing  ambiguity,  soon  vanished  in  its  turn^.     But 
Antiochcne  School,  as  represented  by  Paulus  of 
losata  and  Arius,  took  the  ground  of  an  a.ssailant, 
icked  the  Catholic  doctrine,  and  drew  the  attention 
men  to  its  difficulties,  without  attempting  to  furnish 
theorj-  of  less  perplexity  or  clearer  evidence. 
The  arguments  of  Paulus  (which  it  is  not  to  our 
purpose   here   to   detail)   seem   fairly  to   have  over- 
powered the  first  of  the  Councils  summoned  against 
him  (a,D.  264),  which  dissolved  without  coming  to  a 
decision^.     A  second,  and  (according  to  some  writers) 
a  third,  were  successfully  convoked,  when  at  length 
Is  subtleties  were  exposed   and   condemned  ;    not, 
'ever,  by  the  reasonings   of  the   Fathers   of  the 
luncii  themselves,  but  by  the  instrumentality  of  one 
Ichion,  a  presbyter  of  Antioch,  who,  having  been 
profession  a  Sophist,  encountered  his   advcrsaiy 
own  arms*.     Even  in  yielding,  the  arts  of 

,  info.    [Gregoij'  Na?:.  speaks  of  a  yciAiJi'ij 

cfore  Arianism.     Orat.  mv.  8.] 
y  Eoseb.  Hisi.  vii.  iS.     Cave,  Hisi.  Liierar.  vol,  1.  p.  15a. 
I  [o^d^fHi    mtTUTToAt/ioviTai    01    irDXt/imi,   orai'    ri 
'tHii  }(puifu6a  Kar'  airmv.     Socr.  lii.  16.] 

28  Tlie  Schools  of  the  Sophists.       [chap,  i. 

Paulus  secured  from  his  judges  an  ill-advised  conces- 
sion, the  abandonment  of  the  celebrated  word  hoinoii- 
sion  (consiibstantial),  afterwards  adopted  as  the  test  at 
Nicaea ;  which  the  orthodox  had  employed  in  the 
controversy,  and  to  which  Paulus  objected  as  open  to 
a  misinterpretation^.  Arius  followed  in-  the  track 
thus  marked  out  by  his  predecessor.  Turbulent  by 
character,  he  is  known  in  history  zis  an  offender 
against  ecclesiastical  order,  before  his  agitation  as- 
sumed the  shape  which  has  made  his  name  familiar  to 
posterity^.  When  he  betook  himself  to  the  doctrinal 
controversy,  he  chose  for  the  first  open  avowal  of  his 
heterodoxy  the  opportunity  of  an  attack  upon  his 
diocesan,  who  was  discoursing  on  the  mystery  of  the 
Trinity  to  the  clergy  of  Alexandria.  Socrates,  who  is 
far  from  being  a  partisan  of  the  Catholics,  informs  us 
that  Arius  being  well  skilled  in  dialectics  sharply 
replied  to  the  bishop,  accused  him  of  Sabellianism, 
and  went  on  to  argue  that  "  if  the  Father  begat  the 
Son,  certain  conclusions  would  follow,"  and  so  pro- 
ceeded. His  heresy,  thus  founded  in  a  syllogism, 
spread  itself  by  instruments  of  a  kindred  character. 
First,  we  read  of  the  excitement  which  his  reasonings 
produced  in  Egypt  and  Lybia  ;  then  of  his  letters 
addressed  to  Eusebius  and  to  Alexander,  which  display 
a  like  pugnacious  and  almost  satirical  spirit ;  and 
then  of  his  verses  composed  for  the  use  of  the  populace 
in  ridicule  of  the  orthodox  doctrine^.  But  afterwards, 
when  the  heresy  was   arraigned  before  the  Nicene 

»  Bull.  Defens.  Fid.  Nic.  ii.  i.  §  9—14.  • 

*  Epiph.  Haer.  Ixix.  2. 

^  Socr.  i.  5,  6.     Theod.  Hist.  1.  5.     Epiphan,  Hucr.  Ixix.  7,  8.     Philo- 
storg.  ii.  «.     Athan.  de  Dccret.  16, 

Council,  and  placed  on  the  defensive,  and  later  still, 
'hen  its  successes  reduced  it  to  the  necessity  of  occu- 
ing  the  chairs  of  theology,  it  suffered  the  fate  of  the 
ter  dogmatic  heresies  before  it ;  split,  in  spite  of 
court  favour,  into  at  least  four  diflcrcnt  creeds,  in  less 
than  twenty  years^ ;  and  at  length  gave  way  to  the 
despised  but  indestructible  tinjtli  which  it  had  for  a 
time  obscured. 

Arianism  had  in  fact  a  close  connexion  with  the 
existing  Aristotelic  sclioo!.  This  might  have  been 
conjectured,  even  had  there  been  no  proof  of  the  fact, 
adapted  as  that  philosopher's  logical  system  con- 
fessedly is  to  baffle  an  adversary,  or  at  most  to  detect 
error,  rather  than  to  establish  truth'.  But  we  have 
actually  reason,  in  the  circumstances  of  its  history, 
for  considering  it  as  the  off-shoot  of  those  schools  of 
inquiry  and  debate  which  acknowledged  Aristotle  as 
their  principal  authority,  and  were  conducted  by 
teachers  who  went  by  the  name  of  Sophists.  It  was 
in  these  schools  that  the  leaders  of  the  heretical  body 
wrere  educated  for  the  part  assigned  them  in  the 
troubles  of  the  Church.  The  oratory  of  Faulus  of 
Samosata  is  characterized  by  the  distinguishing  traits 
of  the  scholastic  eloquence  in  the  descriptive  letter  of 
the  Council  which  condemned  him  ;  in  which,  niore- 
:r,  he  is  stigmatized  by  the  most  disgraceful  title  to 
a  Sophist  was  exposed  by  the  degraded  exercise 

30  The  Schools  of  the  Sophists,     [chap.  i. 

of  his  profession^  The  skill  of  Arius  in  the  art  of 
disputation  is  well  known.  Asterius  was  a  Sophist 
by  profession.  Aetius  came  from  the  School  of  an 
Aristotelian  of  Alexandria.  Eunomius,  his  pupil, 
who  re-constructed  the  Arian  doctrine  on  its  original 
basis,  at  the  end  of  the  reign  of  Constantius,  is  repre- 
sented by  Ruffinus  as  "  pre-eminent  in  dialectic 
power2."  At  a  later  peri9d  still,  the  like  disputatious 
spirit  and  spurious  originality  are  indirectly  ascribed 
to  the  heterodox  school,  in  the  advice  of  Sisinnius  to 
Nectarius  of  Constantinople,  when  the  Emperor 
Theodosius  required  the  latter  to  renew  the  contro- 
versy with  a  View  to  its  final  settlement^.  Well 
versed  in  theological  learning,  and  aware  that  adroit- 
ness in  debate  was  the  very  life  and  weapon  of  heresy, 
Sisinnius  proposed  to  the  Patriardi,  to  drop  the  use  of 
dialectics,  and  merely  challenge  h>s  opponents  to  utter 
a  general  anathema  against  all  such  Ante-Nicene 
Fathers  as  had  taught  what  thej?-  themselves  now 
denounced  as  false  doctrine.  On  the  experiment 
being  tried,  the  heretics  would  neither  consent  to  be 
tried  by  the  opinions  of  the  ancients,  nor  yet  dared 
condemn  those  whom  "all  the  people  counted  as 
prophets."  "  Upon  this,"  say  the  historians  who 
record  the  story,  "the  Emperor  perceived  that  they 
rested  their  cause  on  their  dialectic  skill,  and  not  on 
the  testimony  of  the  early  Church'^." 

Abundant  evidence,  were  more  required,  could  be 

*  cro^to"T^S  KQX  yorjs,  a  juggler.    Vide  Cressol.  Theatr.  Rhetor,  i.  13, 

Hi.  17. 

3  Petav.  Theol.  prolegom.  iii.  3.     Baltus,  D.^fense  des  Perr     S.   1^1 
Brucker.  vol.  iii.  p.  288.      Cave,  Hist.  Literar.  vol.  1. 

>  Bull,  Difens.  Fid.  Nic.  Epilog.  ■  ■ 

*  Soci.  HisL  V.  10.    Soz.  Hist.  vii.  12. 

SECT,  B,]     The  Schoois  of  the  Sophists. 

added  to  the  above,  in  proof  of  the  connexion  of  the 
Arians  with  the  schools  of  heathen  disputation.  The 
iwo  Gregories,  Basil,  Ambrose,  and  Cyril,  protest  with 
one  voice  against  the  dialectics  of  their  opponents  ; 
aiid  the  sum  of  their  declarations  is  briefly  expressed 
by  2.  writer  of  the  fourth  century,  who  calls  Aristotle 
iht  Bishop  of  the  AriansS 

And  while  the  science  of  argumentation  provided 
.  the  means,  their  practice  of  disputing  for  the  sake  of 
C  exercise  ur  amusement  supplied  the  temptation,  of 
Ilssaiiing  received  opinions.  This  practice,  which  had 
I  long  prevailed  in  the  Schools,  was  early  introduced 
jihto  the  Eastern  Church^.     It  was  there  employed  as 

•  means  of  preparing  the  Christian  teacher  for  the 
I'ttintroverey  with  unbelievers.  The  discussion  somc- 
V|tiincs  proceeded  in  the  form  of  a  lecture  delivered  by 
^*iie  master  of  the  school  to  his  pupils  ;  sometimes  in 
rthat  of  an  inquiry,  to  be  submitted  to  the  criticism 

*  his  hearers  ;  sometimes  by  way  of  dialogue,  in 
^Tfhich  opposite  sides  were  taken  for  argument-sake. 

I"  some  cases,  it  was  taken  down  in  notes  by  the 
'•ystanders,  at  the  time  ;  in  others  committed  to 
writing  by  the   parties   engaged   in   it'.     Necessary 

■  Dogi 


a.  Thcol.  sapta.  Biucker,  lot.  iii. 
■  69.  [VigiL  Thaps.  comi.  Eulych. 
Cii  1 1  jd  (pUTTuc^  j  and  the  actual  discuHion, 

Rhci,  ii.  3,     pide  also  Alhan.  Tr.  p.  44, 
n>x  in  Emcsd  litita  OtigEii,  ap  Lumper,  i, 

yii/ii-ooTOtol    Xoyoi  woe   dyiomrrixoi, 
uu  Empiikui,  il.l:  Mypoc  i.  33,11.5;, 

%xt.  Huk  i.  5. 

i^*-  ill,  3ii. 

32  The  Schools  of  the  Sophists,     [chap.  i. 

as  these  exercises  would  be  for  the  purpose  designed, 
yet  they  were  obviously  open  to  abuse,  though 
moderated  by  ever  so  orthodox  and  strictly  scriptural 
a  rule,  in  an  age  when  no  sufficient  ecclesiastical 
symbol  existed,  as  a  guide  to  the  memory  and  judg- 
ment of  the  eager  disputant.  It  is  evident,  too,  how 
difficult  it  would  be  to  secure  opinions  or  arguments 
from  publicity,  which  were  but  hazarded  in  the 
confidence  of  Christian  friendship,  and  which,  when 
viewed  apart  from  the  circumstances  of  the  case,  lent 
a  seemingly  deliberate  sanction  to  heterodox  novelties. 
Athanasius  implies^,  that  in  the  theological  works  of 
Origen  and  Theognostus,  while  the  orthodox  faith 
was  explicitly  maintained,  nevertheless  heretical  tenets 
were  discussed,  and  in  their  place  more  or  less  de- 
fended, by  way  of  exercise  in  argument.  The  coun- 
tenance thus  accidentally  given  to  the  cause  of  error 
is  evidenced  in  his  eagerness  to  give  the  explanation. 
But  far  greater  was  the  evil,  when  men  destitute  of 
religious  seriousness  and  earnestness  engaged  in  the 
like  theological  discussions,  not  with  any  definite 
ecclesiastical  object,  but  as  a  mere  trial  of  skill,  or  as 
a  literary  recreation  ;  regardless  of  the  mischief  thus 
done  to  the  simplicity  of  Christian  morals,  and  the 
evil  encouragement  given  to  fallacious  reasonings  and 
sceptical  views.  The  error  of  the  ancient  Sophists 
had  consisted  in  their  indulging  without  restraint  or 
discrimination  in  the  discussion  of  practical  topics, 
whether  religious  or  political,  instead  of  selecting 
such  as  might  exercise,  without  demoralizing,  their 
minds.     The  rhetoricians  of  Christian  times   intro- 

•  Athan.  de  Decree.  25  and  27.     [He  says  the  same  of  Marccllus  ia 
his  defence,  Apol.  contr.  Ar.  47.] 

'.'he  Sc/wals  of  the  Hophisls. 

ilutcd  tlie   same 

into   their   trcatm 

of  tlic 

I  most  r^acrcd  subjects  of  theology.  We 
^retold,  that  Juhan  commenced  his  opposition  to  the 
tnic  faitli  by  defending-  the  heathen  side  of  religious 
Questions,  in  disputing  with  his  brother  GalJus^  ;  and 
JJrobably  he  would  not  have  been  able  himself  tu 
^ign  the  point  of  time  at  which  he  ceased  merely  to 
^s\;.f^  a  part,  and  became  earnest  in  his  unbelief.  But 
_"  is  unnecessary  to  have  recourse  to  particular 
'"Stances,  in  order  to  prove  the  consequences  of  a 
practice  so  evidently  destructive  of  a  reverential  and 

cr  spirit 


Nioreover,  in  these  theological  discussions,  the  dis- 

P^tanta  were  in  danger  of  being  misled  by  the  un- 

'''^Undness  of  the  positions  which   they  assumed,  as 

^'dnentaiy  truths  or  axioms  in  the  argument     As 

^^ic  and  rhetoric  made  them  expert  in  pi'oof  and 

""^riitation,  so  there  was  mucli  in  other  sciences,  which 

*~**Tned  a  liberal   education,  in   geometry  and   arith- 

"^Citic,  to  confine  the  mind  to  the  contemplation  of 

"^^atcrial   objects,   as   if  these  could   supply  suitable 

^sts  and  standards  for  examining  those  of  a  moral 

•**id  spiritual  nature  ;  whereas  there  are  truths  foreign 

**i  the  province  of  the  most  exercised  intellect,  some 

^^  J"  them  the  peculiar  discoveries  of  the  improved  moral 

^^-^nsc  (or  what  Scripture   terms   "the   Spirit"),  and 

^^ihers   still    less   on   a  level    with   our  reason,   and 

•"^ceivcd  on  the  sole  authority  of  Revelation.     Then, 

Ift'ever,  as  now,  the  minds  of  speculative  men  were 
patient  of  ignorance,  and  loth  to  confess  that  the 
ITS  of  truth  and  falsehood,  which  their  experience  of 
S  world  furnished,  could  not  at  once  be  applied  to 


34  The  Schools  of  the  Sophists,     [chap.  i. 

measure  and  determine  the  facts  of  another.  Accord- 
ingly, nothing  was  left  for  those  who  would  not 
believe  the  incomprehensibility  of  the  Divine  Essence, 
but  to  conceive  of  it  by  the  analogy  of  sense ;  and 
using  the  figurative  terms  of  theology  in  their  literal 
meaning  as  if  landmarks  in  their  inquiries,  to  suppose 
that  then,  and  then  only,  they  steered  in  a  safe  course, 
when  they  avoided  every  contradiction  of  a  mathe- 
matical and  material  nature.  Hence,  canons  grounded 
on  physics  were  made  the  basis  of  discussions  about 
possibilities  and  impossibilities  in  a  spiritual  sub- 
stance, as  confidently  and  as  fallaciously,  as  those 
which  in  modern  times  have  been  derived  from  the 
same  false  analogies  against  the  existence  of  moral 
self-action  or  free-will.  Thus  the  argument  by  which 
Paulus  of  Samosata  baffled  the  Antiochene  Council, 
was  drawn  from  a  sophistical  use  of  the  very  word 
substance,  which  the  orthodox  had  employed  in  ex- 
pressing the  scriptural  notion  of  the  unity  subsisting 
between  the  Father  and  the  Son^  Such  too  was  the 
mode  of  reasoning  adopted  at  Rome  by  the  Artemas 
or  Artemon,  already  mentioned,  and  his  followers,  at 
the  end  of  the  second  century.  A  contemporary 
writer,  after  saying  that  they  supported  their  "  God- 
denying  apostasy  "  by  syllogistic  forms  of  argument, 
proceeds,  "Abandoning  the  inspired  writings,  they 
devote  themselves  to  geometry,  as  becomes  those 
who  are  of  the  earth,  and  speak  of  the  earth,  and 
are  ignorant  of  Him  who  is  from  above.  Euclid's 
treatises,  for  instance,  are  zealously  studied  by 
some  of  them  ;  Aristotle  and  Theophrastus  are 
objects   of   their  admiration ;  while  Galen   may   be 

'  Bull,  Dcfens.  F.  N.  ii.  i.  %  lo. 

se.c:t.  II.]     Tlie  Schools  of  the  Sophists.  35 

said  even  to  be  adored  by  others.  It  is  needless  to 
declare  that  such  perverters  of  the  sciences  of  un- 
believers to  the  purposes  of  their  own  heresy,  such 
diluters  of  the  simple  Scripture  faith  with  heathen 
subtleties,  have  no  claim  whatever  to  be  called  be- 
lievers.2  "  And  such  is  Epiphanius's  description  of  the 
A^nomoeans,  the  genuine^  offspring  of  the  original 
A.rian  stock.  "Aiming,"  he  says,  "to  exhibit  the 
Divine  Nature  by  means  of  Aristotelic  syllogisms  and 
geometrical  data,  they  are  thence  led  on  to  declare 
that  Christ  cannot  be  derived  from  God^." 


Lastly,  the  absence  of  an  adequate  symbol  of  doc- 
trine increased  the  evils  thus  existing,  by  affording  an 
excuse  and  sometimes  a  reason  for  investigations,  the 
necessity  of  which  had  not  yet  been  superseded  by  the 
authority  of  an  ecclesiastical  decision.     The  tradition- 
ary system,  received  from  the  first  age  of  the  Church, 
had  been  as  yet  but  partially  set  forth  in  authoritative 
forms ;  and  by  the  time  of  the  Nicene  Council,  the 
voices  of  the  Apostles  were  but  faintly  heard  through- 
^^t  Christendom,  and  might  be  plausibly  disregarded 
^y  those  who  were  unwilling  to  hear.     Even  at  the 
"^grinning   of   the    third    century,    the    disciples    of 
-^^temas  boldly  pronounced  their  heresy  to  be  apos- 
tolical, and  maintained  that  all  the  bishops  of  Rome 
^^d    held  it  till  Victor  inclusive^,  whose  episcopate 
^^s    but   a   few  years   before  their  own  time.     The 
Pfc>gress    of   unbelief   naturally    led    them     on     to 
^^parage,   rather  than  to    appeal    to    their    prede- 
cessors ;    and   to   trust   their   cause  to    their    own 

Huseb.  Hist.v.  28.  '  Epiph.  Haer.  p.  Sop.  ^  Euseb.  ibid. 

D  2 

36  The  Schools  of  the  Sophists,     [chap,  i, 

ingenuity,  instead  of  defending  an  inconvenient  fiction 
concerning  the  opinions  of  a  former  age.  It  ended  in 
teaching  them  to  regard  the  ecclesiastical  authorities 
of  former  times  as  on  a  level  with  the  uneducated  and 
unenlightened  of  their  own  days.  Paulus  did  not 
scruple  to  express  contempt  for  the  received  exposi- 
tors of  Scripture  at  Antioch  ;  and  it  is  one  of  the  first 
accusations  brought  by  Alexander  against  Arius  and 
his  party,  that  "they  put  themselves  above  the 
ancients,  and  the  teachers  of  our  youth,  and  the 
prelates  of  the  day  ;  considering  themselves  alone 
to  be  wise,  and  to  have  discovered  truths,  which  had 
never  been  revealed  to  man  before  them  5," 

On  the  other  hand,  while  the  line  of  tradition, 
drawn  out  as  it  was  to  the  distance  of  two  centuries 
from  the  Apostles,  had  at  length  become  of  too  frail 
a  texture,  to  resist  the  touch  of  subtle  and  ill-directed 
reason,  the  Church  was  naturally  unwilling  to  have 
recourse  to  the  novel,  though  necessary  measure,  of 
imposing  an  authoritative  creed  upon  those  whom  it 
invested  with  the  office  of  teaching.  If  I  avow  my 
belief,  that  freedom  from  symbols  and  articles  is 
abstractedly  the  highest  state  of  Christian  communion, 
and  the  peculiar  privilege  of  the  primitive  Church^, 
it  is  not  from  any  tenderness  towards  that  proud 
impatience  of  control  in  which  many  exult,  as  in  a 
virtue  ;  but  first,  because  technicality  and  formalism 

*  Theod.  Hist.  i.  4.  ["  Solae  in  contemptu  sunt  divinse  literae,  quae  nee 
suam  scholam  nee  magistros  habeant,  et  de  quibus  peiitissim^  disputarc 
se  ciedat,  qui  nunquam  didicit.'*  Facund.  p.  581.  ed.  Sirm. ;  vide  alsp, 
P-  565-] 

•*  ["Non  eguistis  literA,  qui  spiritu  abundabatis,  etc.  Ubi  sensus 
conscientiae  pcriclitatur,  illic  litera  postulatur."  Hilar,  dc  Syn.  63.  Vide 
the  Benedictine  note.] 

SEOT.  II.]     The  Schools  of  the  Sophists.  37 

are,  in  their  degree,  inevitable  results  of  public  con- 
fessions of  faith  ;  and  next,  because  when  confessions 
do  not  exist,  the  mysteries  of  divine  truth,  instead  of 
being  exposed  to  the  gaze  of  the  profane  and  unin- 
structed,  are  kept  hidden  in  the  bosom  of  the  Church, 
far  more  faithfully  than  is  otherwise  possible  ;    and 
reserved  by  a  private  teaching,  through  the  channel 
of  her  ministers,   as   rewards   in   due  measure    and 
season,  for  those  who  are  prepared  to  profit  by  them  ; 
for  those,  that  is,  who  are  diligently  passing  through 
the  successive  stages  of  faith  and  obedience.     And 
thus,  while  the  Church  is  not  committed  to  declara- 
tions, which,  most  true  as  they  arc,  still  are  daily 
Wrested  by  infidels  to  their  ruin  ;  on  the  other  hand, 
^uch  of  that  mischievous  fanaticism  is  avoided,  which 
^t  present  abounds  from  the  vanity  of  men,  who  think 
^hat  they  can    explain  the  sublime  doctrines   and 
exuberant  promises  of  the  Gospel,  before  they  have 
yet  learned  to  know  themselves  and  to  discern  the 
holiness  of  God,  under  the  preparatory  discipline  of 
^he  Law  and  of  Natural  Religion.     Influenced,  as  we 
^ay  suppose,  by  these  various  considerations,  from 
^^verence  for  the  free  spirit  of  Christian  faith,  and 
^till  more  for  the  sacred  truths  which  are  the  objects 
^f  it,  and  again  from  tenderness  both  for  the  heathen 
^nd  the  neophyte,  who  were  unequal  to  the  reception 
of  the  strong  meat  of  the  full  Gospel,  the  rulers  of 
the  Church  were  dilatory  in  applying  a  remedy,  which 
nevertheless  the  circumstances  of  the  times  impera- 
tively required.     They  were  loth  to  confess,  that  the 
Church  had  grown  too  old  to  enjoy  the  free,  unsus  • 
picious  teaching  with  which  her  childhood  was  blest ; 
and  that  her  disciples  must,  for  the  future,  calculate 
and  reason  before  they  spoke  and  acted.     So  much 

3^  The  Schools  of  the  Sophists,    [chap.  i. 

was  this  the  case,  that  in  the  Council  of  Antioch  (as 
;  has   been   said),   on   the    objection   of    Paulus,   they 

actually  withdrew  a  test  which  was  eventually  adopted 

by  the  more  experienced  Fathers  at  Nicaea ;  and 
j  which,  if  then  sanctioned,  might,  as  far  as  the  Church 

]  was  concerned,  have  extinguished  the  heretical  spirit 

I  in  the  very  place  of  its  birth. — Meanwhile,  the  adop- 

j  tion  of  Christianity,  as  the  religion  of  the   empire, 

I  augmented  the  evil  consequences   of  this   omission, 

j  excommunication     becoming     more    difficult,    while 

I  entrance  into  the   Church  was  less  restricted  tlian 



-'IS  tlie  Church  of  Antioch  was  exposed  to  the 
influence  of  Judaism,  so  was  the  Alexandrian  Church 
fuaracterized  iu  primitive  times  by  its  attachment  to 
"■^t  comprehensive  philosophy,  which  was  reduced  to 
^y^tem  abottt  the  beginning  of  the  third  century,  and 
•nen  went  by  the  name  of  the  New  Platonic,  or 
^^'ectic.  A  supposed  resemblance  between  the 
'•'"ian  and  the  Eclectic  doctrine  concerning  the  Holy 
'•"inity,  has  led  to  a  common  notion  that  the  Alex- 
■"^cJrian  Fathers  were  the  medium  by  which  a  philo- 
^phical  error  was  introduced  into  the  Church  ;  and 
'His  hypothetical  cause  of  a  disputable  resemblance 
"•Ts  been  apparently  evidenced  by  the  solitary  fact, 
^vhich  cannot  be  denied,  that  Arius  himself  was  a 
presbyter  of  Alexandria.  We  liave  already  seen, 
however,  that  Arius  was  educated  at  Antioch  ;  and 
we  shall  see  hereafter  that,  so  far  from  being  favour- 
ably heard  at  Alexandria,  he  was,  on  the  first  promul- 
gation of  bis  heresy,  expelled  the  Church  in  that  city, 
and  obliged  to  seek  refuge  among  his  Collucianists 
of  Syria.  And  it  is  manifestly  the  opinion  of 
Atbanasius,  that  he  was  but  the  pupil  or  the  tool 
of  deeper  men',  probably  of  Eusebius  of  Nicomcdia, 

lan.  oe  Dfcr.  NicS.  ;o|  aH  Monach.  66  ;  dc  Synod.  )l. 

40  The  Church  of  Alexandria,    [chap.  i. 

who  in  no  sense  belongs  to  Alexandria.  But  various 
motives  have  led  theological  writers  to  implicate  this 
celebrated  Church  in  the  charge  of  heresy.  Infidels 
have  felt  a  satisfaction,  and  heretics  have  had  an 
interest,  in  representing  that  the  most  learned  Chris- 
tian community  did  not  submit  implicitly  to  the 
theology  taught  in  Scripture  and  by  the  Church  ;  a 
conclusion,  which,  even  if  substantiated,  would  little 
disturb  the  enlightened  defender  of  Christianity,  who 
may  safely  admit  that  learning,  though  a  powerful 
instrument  of  the  truth  in  right  hands,  is  no  unerring 
guide  into  it  The  Romanists^,  on  the  other  hand, 
have  thought  by  the  same  line  of  policy  to  exalt  the 
Apostolical  purity  of  their  own  Church,  by  the 
contrast  of  unfaithfulness  m  its  early  rival  ;  and 
(what  is  of  greater  importance)  to  insinuate  both  the 
necessity  of  an  infallible  authority,  by  exaggerating 
the  errors  and  contrarieties  of  the  Ante-Nicene 
Fathers,  and  the  fact  of  its  existence,  by  throwing  us, 
for  exactness  of  doctrinal  statement,  upon  the  de- 
cisions of  the  subsequent  Councils.  In  the  following 
pages,  I  hope  to  clear  the  illustrious  Church  in  ques- 
tion of  the  grave  imputation  thus  directed  against  her 
from  opposite  quarters  :  the  imputation  of  considering 
the  Son  of  God  by  nature  inferior  to  the  Father,  that 
is,  of  platonizing  or  arianizing.  But  I  have  no  need 
to  profess  myself  her  disciple,  though,  as  regards  the 
doctrine  in  debate,  I  might  well  do  so  ;  and,  instead 
of  setting  about  any  formal  defence,  I  will  merely 
place  before  the  reader  the  general  principles  of  her 

■  [As  to  the  charges  made  against  Petavius,  vide  Bull,  Defens.  N.  F. 
proccm. ;  Budd.  Isagog.  p.  580 ;  Bayle,  Diet.  (Petau.)  ;  Brucker,  Phil.  t. 

"^•P-  .U5-] 

SECT,  m.]  The  Churth  of  Alexandria. 

leaching,  and  leave  it  to  him  to  apply  them,  as  far  as 
lie  judges  tliey  will  go,  in  explanation  of  the  language, 
which  has  been  the  ground  of  the  suspicions  against 

Sl  Mark,  the  fountJer  of  the  Alexandrian  Church, 
nuy  b^  numbered  among  the  personal  friends  and 
associates  of  that  Apostle,  who  held  it  to  be  Ins 
especial  office  to  convert  the  Iieathen ;  an  office,  which 
"'■'Is  impressed  upon  the  community  formed  by  the 
E'p'angelist,  with  a  strength  and  permanence  unknown 
in  the  other  primitive  Churches.  The  Alexandrian 
"^^y  peculiarly  be  called  the  Missionary  and  Polemical 
Citurch  of  Antiquity.  Situated  in  the  centre  of  the 
^cessible  world,  and  on  the  extremity  of  Christendom, 
"1  a  city  Avhich  was  at  once  the  chief  mart  of  com- 
'Herce,  and  a  celebrated  seat  of  both  Jewish  and 
Creek  philosophy,  it  was  supplied  in  especial  abun- 
dance, both  with  materials  and  instruments  prompting 
lo  the  exercise  of  Christian  zeal.  Its  catechetical 
schoo],  founded  (it  is  said)  by  the  Evangelist  himself, 
was  a  pattern  to  other  Churches  in  its  diligent  and 
systematic  preparation  of  candidates  for  baptism  ; 
while  other  institutions  were  added  of  a  controversial 
character,  for  the  purpose  of  carefully  examining 
into  the  doctrines  revealed  in  Scripture,  and  of  culti- 
vating the  habit  of  argument  and  disputation^.  While 
the  internal  affairs  of  the  community  were  adminis- 
tered by  its  bishops,  on  these  academical  bodies,  as 
subsidiaryto  the  divinely-sanctioned  system,  devolved 
the  defence  and  propagation  of  the  faith,  under  the 

42  The  Church  of  Alexandria,     [chat.  i. 

presidency  of  laymen  or  inferior  ecclesiastics.  Athen- 
ag,oras,  the  first  recorded  master  of  the  catechetical 
school,  is  known  by  his  defence  of  the  Christians,  still 
extant,  addressed  to  the  Emperor  Marcus.  Pantasnus, 
who  succeeded  him,  was  sent  by  Demetrius,  at  that 
time  bishop,  as  missionary  to  the  Indians  or  Arabians. 
Origen,  who  was  soon  after  appointed  catechist  at  the 
early  age  of  eighteen,  had  already  given  the  earnest  of 
his  future  celebrity,  by  his  persuasive  disputations  with 
the  unbelievers  of  Alexandria.  Afterwards  he  ap- 
peared in  the  character  of  a  Christian  apologist  before 
an  Arabian  prince,  and  Mammaea,  the  mother  of 
Alexander  Severus,  and  addressed  letters  on  the 
subject  of  religion  to  the  Emperor  Philip  and  his  wife 
Severa ;  and  he  w^as  know^n  far  and  wide  in  his  day, 
for  his  indefatigable  zeal  and  ready  services  in  the 
confutation  of  heretics,  for  his  various  controversial 
and  critical  writings,  and  for  the  number  and  dignity 
of  his  converts^. 

Proselytism,  then,  in  all  its  branches,  the  apologetic, 
the  polemical,  and  the  didactic,  being  the  peculiar 
function  of  the  Alexandrian  Church,  it  is  manifest 
that  the  writings  of  its  theologians  would  partake 
largely  of  an  exoteric  character.  I  mean,  that  such 
men  would  write,  not  with  the  openness  of  Christian 
familiarity,  but  with  the  tenderness  or  the  reserve  with 
which  we  are  accustomed  to  address  those  who  do  not 
sympathize  with  us,  or  whom  we  fear  to  mislead  or  to 
prejudice  against  the  truth,  by  precipitate  disclosures 
of  its  details.  The  example  of  the  inspired  writer  of 
the  Epistle  to  the  Hebrews  was  their  authority  for 
making  a  broad   distinction  between  the  doctrines 

*  Philipp.  Sidet.  fragm.  apud  Dodw.  in  Iren.     Huet.  Origen, 

SECT.  III.]     Tlie  Church  of  Alexandria.  43 

suitable  to  the  state  of  the  weak  and  ignorant,  and 
those  which  are  the  peculiar  property  of  a  baptized 
and   regenerate    Christian.       The    Apostle  in    that 
Epistle,  when  speaking  of  the  most  sacred  Christian 
verities,  as  hidden  under  the   allegories  of  the  Old 
Testament,   seems   suddenly   to  check  himself,  from 
the  apprehension    that   he  was   divulging  mysteries 
beyond    the    understanding   of  his  brethren  ;    who, 
instead  of  being  masters  in  Scripture  doctrine,  were 
not  yet  versed    even    in    its    elements,  needed    the 
nourishment     of    children    rather    than     of    grown 
nien,    nay,    perchance,    having    quenched    the    illu- 
niination  of  baptism,   had  forfeited  the  capacity  of 
comprehending  even  the  first  elements  of  the  truth, 
In  the  same  place  he  enumerates  these  elements,  or 
foundation  of  Christian  teaching^,  in  contrast  with  the 
esoteric  doctrines  which  the  "  long-exercised  habit  of 
n^oral  discernment  "  can  alone  appropriate  and  enjoy, 
^  follows  ; — repentance,  faith  in  God,  the  doctrinal 
meaning  of  the  right  of  baptism,  confirmation  as  the 
channel  of  miraculous  gifts,  the  future  resurrection, 
^nd  the  final  separation  of  good  and  bad.     His  first 
Epistle  to  the  Corinthians  contains  the  same  distinc- 
tion between  the  carnal  or  imperfect  and  the  estab- 
hshed  Christian,  which  is  laid  down  in  that  addressed 
to  the  Hebrews.     While  maintaining  that  in  Christi- 
anity is  contained  a  largeness  of  wisdom,  or  (to  use 
human    language)  a  profound   philosophy,   fulfilling 
those  vague  conceptions  of  greatness,  which  had  led 
^^^  aspiring  intellect  of  the  heathen  sages  to  shadow 
^ortlx  their  unreal  systems,  he  at  the  same  time  insists 

^      Hebr.  V.  1 1 ;  vi.  6.  Tot  crTOt;(€ta  t^s  ^P'^Ci^  tC)V  XoytW  rov  Ocov, 
"^^  a/>x5^  "^^^  XptcTToi;  Xoyo9. 

44  Tlie  C/mrch  of  Alexandria,     ["chap,  u 

upon  the  impossibility  of  man's  arriving  at  this  hidderi. 
treasure  all  at  once,  and  warns  his  brethren,  instead  oC 
attempting  to  cross  by  a  short  path  from  the  false  to 
the  true  knowledge,  to  humble  themselves  to  the  lo\\r 
and  narrow  portal  of  the  heavenly  temple,  and  to 
become  fools,  that  they  might  at  length  be  really  wise- 
As  before,  he  speaks  of  the  difference  of  doctrine 
suited  respectively  to  neophytes  and  confirmed  Chris- 
tians, under  the  analogy  of  the  difference  of  food 
proper  for  the  old  and  young  ;  a  difference  which  lies, 
not  in  the  arbitrary  will  of  the  dispenser,  but  in  the 
necessity  of  the  case,  the  more  sublime  truths  of 
Revelation  affording  no  nourishment  to  the  souls  of 
the  unbelieving  or  unstable. 

Accordingly,  in  the  system  of  the  early  catechetical 
schools,  \h.(t  perfect,  or  men  in  Christ,  were  such  as  had 
deliberately  taken  upon  them  the  profession  of  be- 
lievers ;  had  made  the  vows,  and  received  the  grace  of 
baptism  ;  and  were  admitted  to  all  the  privileges  and 
the  revelations  of  which  the  Church  had  been  consti- 
tuted the  dispenser.     But  before  reception  into  this 
full  discipleship,   a   previous   season   of  preparation, 
from  two  to  three  years,  was  enjoined,  in  order  to  try 
their  obedience,  and  instruct  them  in  the  principles  of 
revealed  truth.      During  this  introductory  discipline, 
they  were  called  Catechumens,  and  the  teaching  itself 
Catecheticaly  from  the  careful  and  systematic  exami- 
nation by  which  their  grounding  in    the    faith   was 
effected.     The  matter  of  the  instruction  thus  commu- 
nicated to  them,  varied  with  the  time  of  their  disci- 
pleship, advancing  from  the  most  simple  principle  of 
Natural    Religion   to  the   peculiar  doctrines   of  the 
Gospel,  from  moral  truths  to  the  Christian  mysteries. 
On  their  first  admission  they  were  denominated  hearers^ 

siiCT.  III.]    The  Church  of  Alexandria.  ^^ 

from  the  leave  granted  them  to  attend  the  reading  of 
the  Scriptures  and  sermons  in  the  Church.  After- 
wards, being  allowed  to  stay  during  the  prayers,  and 
receiving  the  imposition  of  hands  as  the  sign  of  their 
progress  in  spiritual  knowledge,  they  were  called 
worshippers.  Lastly,  some  short  time  before  their 
baptism,  they  were  tauglit  the  Lord's  Prayer  (the 
peculiar  privilege  of  the  regenerate),  were  entrusted 
with  the  knowledge  of  the  Creed,  and,  as  destined  for 
incorporation  into  tlie  body  of  believers,  received  the 
titles  of  .ompetmt  or  eieci^.  Even  to  tlie  last,  they 
were  granted  nothing  beyond  a  formal  and  general 
account  of  the  articles  of  the  Christian  faith  ;  the 
exact  and  fully  developed  doctrines  of  the  Trinity 
and  tlie  Incarnation,  and  still  more,  the  doctrine  of 
the  Atonement,  as  once  made  upon  the  cross,  and 
commemorated  and  appropriated  in  the  Eucliarist, 
being  the  exclusive  possession  of  the  serious  and 
practised  Christian.  On  the  other  hand,  the  chief 
subjects  of  ca tech i sings,  as  n'e  learn  from  Cyril ',  were 
the  doctrines  of  repentance  and  pardon,  of  the  neces- 
sity of  good  works,  of  the  nature  and  use  of  baptism, 
and  the  immortality  of  the  soul ; — as  the  Apostle  had 
determined  them. 

Tlic  exoteric  teaching,  thus  observed  in  the  Cate- 
dietical  Schools,  was  still  more  appropriate,  when  the 
Christian  teacher  addressed  himself,  not  to  the  instruc- 
IJon  of  willing  hearers,  but  to  controversy  or  public 
At  the  present  day,  there  are  very  many 
:  Christians,  who  consider  that  the  evangelical 

'  otTiio/icyoi.     BIngliarn,  Antiq.  book  i-     Suiccc 
'  Bmgharo,  ibid. 

46  The  Ch::r:h  rf  A Icxjndria.     [chap. 

doctrines  are  the  a":?o::r.tei  instruments  of  conversion  ^ 
and,  as  such,   cxcV-?;vl-v  attended  'witb  the  Divir''^^ 
blessiniT.     In  prx^f  of  :h:?  T^v-^s.tion,  with  an  inconsi  -^ 
tency   reni:iri:jb]e   in   :>.:•>-:    who   profess    a    jealou-^ 
adherence  to  the  :n5:>:r;:c  :ext.  and  are  not  slow  t::<= 
accuse  others  of  ignorjir-c-.-  of  its  contents,  they  appea^/, 
not  to  Scripture,  but  10  the  ?t:rrln<x  effects  of  th£s^ 
(so-called")  Gospel  prei/^.  and  to  the  inefficiency; 
on  the  other  hand,  of  n^ere  exhortations  respecting 
the  benevolence  and  nierc>-  of  God,  the  necessity  of 
repentance,  the  rights  of  conscience,  and  the  obligation 
of  obedience.     But  it  is  scarcely  the  attribute  of  a 
generous  faith,  to  be  anx;ou5:y  inquiring  into  the  con- 
sequences of  this  or  that  sys:em.  with  a  ^•iew  to  decide 
its   admissibility,   instead  of  rjming  at  once  to   the 
revealed  ^^-ord,  and  inquiring  into  the  rule  there  ex- 
hibited to  us.     Goi  can  defend  and  \-indicate  His  own 
command,  whatever  it  turn  out  to  be  ;  weak  though  it 
seem  to  our  vain  wisdom,  and  unwortiiy  of  the  Giver  ; 
and  that  His  course  in  tlil5  instance  is  really  that  which 
the  hasty  religionist   condemns   as   if  the  theory  of 
unenlightened  formalists,  is  evident  to  careful  students 
of  Scripture,  and  is  connrmed  by  the  practice  of  the 
Primitive  Church. 

As  to  Scripture,  I  shall  but  obserxe,  in  addition  to 
the  remarks  already  made  on  the  passages  in  the 
Epistles  to  the  Corinthians  and  Hebrews,  that  no  one 
sanction  can  be  adduced  thence,  whetlier  of  precept  or 
of  example,  in  behalf  of  the  practice  of  stimulating  the 
affections,  such  as  gratitude  or  remorse,  by  means  of 
the  doctrine  of  the  Atonement,  in  order  to  the  con- 
version of  the  hearers  ; — ^that,  on  the  contrary,  it  is  its 
lethod  to  connect  the  Gospel  with  Natural 
ind  to  mark  out  obedience  to  the  moral  law 

SEcr.  in.]     TJie  Ckurek  of  Alexandria.  47 

IS  the  ordinary  means  of  attaining  to  a  Christian  faith, 
the  higher  evangelical  truths,  as  well  as  the  Eucharist, 
which  is  the  visible  emblem  of  them,  being  received  as 
ihc  reward  and  confirmation  of  habitual  piety  ; — 
that,  in  the  preaching  of  the  Apostles  and  Evangelists 
in  the  Book  of  Acts,  the  sacred  mysteries  are  revealed 
10  individuals  in  proportion  to  their  actual  religious 
proficiency;  that  the  first  principles  of  righteousness, 
temperance,  and  judgment  to  come,  are  urged  upon 
Felix ;  while  the  elders  of  Ephesus  are  reminded  of 
liie  divinity  and  vicarious  sacrifice  of  Christ,  and  the 
presence  and  power  of  the  Holy  Spirit  in  the  Church; 
—lastly,  that  among  those  converts,  who  were  made 
the  chief  instruments  of  the  first  propagation  of  the 
Gospel,  or  who  are  honoured  with  especial  favour  in 
Scripture,  none  arc  found  who  had  not  been  faithful 
to  the  light  already  given  them,  and  were  not  distin- 
K^iished,  previously  to  their  conversion,  by  a  strictly 
conscientiousdeportment  Sucharethe  divinenoticcs 
given  to  those  who  desire  an  apostolical  rule  for  dis- 
peming  the  word  of  life;  and  as  such,  the  ancient 
'■"athcrs  received  them.  They  received  them  as  the 
fulfilment  of  our  Lord's  command,  not  to  give  that 
*hich  is  holy  to  dogs,  nor  to  cast  pearls  before  swine  ; 
ft  text  cited  by  Clement  and  TcrtulHan*,  among  others, 
m  justification  of  their  cautious  distribution  of  sacrctl 
tnitk  lliey  also  considered  this  caution  as  the  result 
of  the  most  truly  charitable  consideration  for  thrMC 
*hom  they  addressed,  %lio  were  IJkcIy  to  be  ptr- 
pfcxed,  not  con\-crted.  by  the  sodden  exhibition  of 

r:  CT-angelical  scheme     Thb  is  the  doctrine 
oret.  Chrysostom.  and  otbeis,  to  their  cowi- 

48  The  Church  of  Alexandria,     [chap.  1. 

merits  upon  the  passage  in  the  Epistle  to  the  Hebrews^. 
"  Should  a  catechumen  ask  thee  what  the  teachei-s 
have  determined,  (says  Cyril  of  Jerusalem)  tell  nothing 
to  one  who  is  without.  For  we  impart  to  thee  a  secret 
and  a  promise  of  the  world  to  come.  Keep  safe  the 
secret  for  Him  who  gives  the  reward.  Listen  not  to 
one  who  asks,  *What  harm  is  there  in  my  knowing 
also } '  Even  the  sick  ask  for  wine,  which,  unseason- 
ably given,  brings  on  delirium ;  and  so  there  come 
two  ills,  the  death  of  the  patient  and  the  disrepute  of 
the  physician."  In  another  place  he  says,  "  All  may 
hear  the  Gospel,  but  the  glory  of  the  Gospel  is  set 
apart  for  the  true  disciples  of  Christ.  To  all  who 
could  hear,  the  Lord  spake,  but  in  parables  ;  to  His 
disciples  He  privately  explained  them.  What  is  the 
blaze  of  Divine  glory  to  the  enlightened,  is  the  blind- 
ing of  unbelievers.  These  are  the  secrets  which  the 
Church  unfolds  to  him  who  passes  on  from  the  cate- 
chumens, and  not  to  the  heathen.  For  we  do  not 
unfold  to  a  heathen  the  truths  concerning  Father,  Son, 
and  Holy  Spirit;  nay,  not  even  in  the  case  of  catechu- 
mens, do  we  clearly  explain  the  mysteries,  but  we 
frequently  say  many  things  indirectly,  so  that  believers 
who  have  been,  taught  may  understand,  and  the  others 
may  not  be  injured'." 

The  work  of  St.  Clement,  of  Alexandria,  called 
Stromateis,  or  Tapestry-work,  from  the  variet)^  of  its 
contents,  well  illustrates  the  Primitive  Church's  method 
of  instruction,  as  far  as  regards  the  educated  portion 
of  the  community.  It  had  the  distinct  object  of  intc- 
resting    and   conciliating    the   learned   heathen   wlio 

•  Suicer.  Tlies.  in  vcib.  OTotx^tov, 

*  Cyril.  Ilieros.  cd.  Milles,  prnef.  §  7  catcch.  vi.  i6. 

perused  it ;  but  it  also  exemplifies  the  peculiar  caution 
then  adopted  by  Christians  in  teaching  the  truth, — 
their  desire  to  rouse  the  moral  powers  to  internal 
voluntary  action,  and  their  dread  of  loading  or  formal- 
izing the  mind.  In  the  opening  of  his  work,  Clement 
speaks  of  his  miscellaneous  discussions  as  mingling 
truth  with  philosophy ;  "  or  rather,"  he  continues, 
"involving  and  concealing  it,  as  the  shell  hides  tliu 
edible  fruit  of  the  nut."  In  another  place  he  compares 
them,  not  to  a  fancy  garden,  but  to  some  thickly- 
wooded  mountain,  where  vegetation  of  every  sort, 
growing  promiscuously,  by  its  verj-  abundance  con- 
ceals from  the  plunderer  the  fruit  trees,  which  are 
intended  for  the  rightful  owner.  "We  must  hide,"  he 
says,  "that  wisdom,  spoken  in  mystery,  which  the 
Son  of  God  has  taught  us.  Thus  the  Prophet  Esaias 
has  his  tongue  cleansed  with  fire,  that  he  may  be  able 
to  declare  the  vision  ;  and  our  cars  must  be  sanctified 
as  well  as  our  tongues,  if  we  aim  at  being  recipients  of 
LJtfac  truth-  This  was  a  hindrance  to  my  writing;  and 
ftili  I  have  anxiety,  since  Scripture  says,  '  Cast  not 
rour  pearls  before  swine;'  for  those  pure  and  bright 
ruths,  which  are  so  marvellous  and  full  of  u^d  to 
>dly  natures,  do  but  provoke  laughter,  when  spoken 
n  the  hearing  of  the  manys."  The  Fathers  considered 
lat  they  had  the  pattern  as  well  as  the  rccommen- 
iion  of  this  method  of  teaching  in  Scripture  itself-^ 

This  self-restraint  .ind  abstinence,  practised  at  least 

in  Sciiprmis  saciis  mysiwioruin  profundi cairs,  q 
vilcscant;  o\>  hoc  ([uxninlar.  ul  vxcrceani;  1 
,  III  pascant."     Augusl.  in  Pclav.  pnrf  in  Ttin.  i. 


The  Church  of  Alexandria,     [chat,  l 

partially,  by  the  Primitive  Church  in  the  pubUcotioN 
of  the  most  sacred  doctrines  of  our  religion,  is  termcdf 
in  theological  language,  the  Disciplina  Arcani ;  coH 
cerning  which  a  few  remarks  may  here  be  added,  ni 
so  much  in  recommendation  of  it  (which  is  beside  ir 
purpose),  as  to  prevent  misconception  of  its  princip 
and  limits. 

Now,  first,  it  may  be  asked.  How  was  any  secrn; 
practicable,  seeing  that  the  Scriptures  were  open  b 
every  one  who  chose  to  consult  them?     It  may  starti 
those  who  are  but  acquainted  witii  tlie  popular  Avrit 
ings  of  this  day,  yet,   I  believe,   the  most  accural 
consideration  of  the  subject  will  lead  us  to  acqui 
in  the  statement,  as  a  general  tnith,  that  the  doctrii 
in   question   have   never   been   learned   merely  fr 
Scripture.       Surely  the   Sacred   Volume  was   ne 
-"  intended,  and  is  not  adapted,  to  teach  us  our  cre< 
however  certain  it  is  that  we  can  prove  our  creed  froi 
it,  when  it  has  once  been  taught  us"*,  and  in  spite  « 
individual  producible  exceptions  to  the  general  ml* 
From  the  very  first,  that  nile  has  been,  as  a  matter  < 
fact,   that   the  Church  should   teach  the   truth, 
then  should  appeal  to  Scripture  in  vindication  of  it 
oxvn    teaching.     And  from  the  first,  it  has  been  tb 
error  of  heretics  to  neglect  the  information  thus  pn 
vided  for  them,  and  to  attempt  of  themselves  a 
to  which  they  are  unequal,  the  eliciting  a  systcmatj 
doctrine  from  the  scattered  notices  of  the  truth  whic 
Scripture  contains.     Such  men  act,  in  the  solemn  coi 
ccrns  of  religion,  the  part  of  the  self-sufficient  nattm 

*  Vlilc  Ml.  HanklnVi  oi.glnal  and  mon  conclusive  wnik  on  t 
r)ta(ive  Tradition,  which  cunuins  In  il  tlie  key  to  a  numlicf  o(  di 
wbloh  are  apl  lo  pcrplrx  ihe  thcaloeitnl  iiu-lfnt. 

SECT,  m.]     The  Church  of  Alexandria. 

pliiiosoplier,  who  should  obstinately  reject  Newton's 
thcoiy  of  gravitation,  and  endeavour,  with  talents  in- 
adequate to  tJie  task,  to  strike  out  some  theory  of 
motion  by  himself.  The  insufficiency  of  the  mere 
private  study  of  Holy  Scripture  for  arriving  at  the 
exact  and  entire  truth  which  Scripture  really  contains, 
is  shown  by  the  fact,  that  creeds  and  teachers  have 
ever  been  divinely  provided,  and  by  the  discordance 
of  opinions  which  exists  wherever  those  aids  are 
thrown  aside  ;  as  it  is  also  shown  by  the  very  struc- 
ture of  the  Bible  itself  And  if  this  be  so,  it  follows 
that,  while  inquirers  and  neophytes  in  the  first 
centuries  lawfully  vs;d  the  inspired  writings  for  the 
purposes  of  morals  and  for  instruction  in  the  rudi- 
ments of  the  faith,  they  still  might  need  the  teaching 
of  the  Church  as  a  key  to  the  collection  of  passages 
which  related  to  the  mysteries  of  the  Gospel,  passages 
which  are  obscure  from  the  necessity  of  combining 
and  receiving  them  all. 

A  more  plausible  objection  to  the  existence  of  this 
nile  of  secrecy  in  the  Early  Church  arises  from  the 
circumstance,  that  the  Christian  Apologists  openly 
mention  to  the  whole  world  the  sacred  tenets  which 
have  been  above  represented  as  the  peculiar  possession 
of  the  confirmed  believer.  But  it  must  be  obsci-ved, 
that  the  writers  of  these  were  frequently  laymen,  and 
so  did  not  commit  the  Church  as  a  body,  nor  even  in 
its  separate  authorities,  to  formal  statement  or  to 
theological  discussion.  The  great  duty  of  the  Chris- 
tian teacher  was  to  unfold  the  sacred  truths  in  due 
order,  and  not  prematurely  to  insist  on  the  difficulties, 

Klo  apply  the  promises  of  the  Gospel  ;  and  if  others 
ed  in  this  respect,  still  it  remained  a  duty  to  him. 

52  The  Church  of  Alexandria,     Lchap.  i.  ' 

And  further,  these  disclosures  are  not  so  conclusive  as 
they  seem  to  be  at  first  sight ;  the  approximations  of 
philosophy,  and  the  corruptions  of  heresy,  being  so 
considerable,  as  to  create  a  confusion  concerning  the 
precise  character  of  the  ecclesiastical  doctrine.  Besides, 
in  matter  of  fact,  some  of  the  early  apologists  them- 
selves, as  Tatian,  were  tainted  with  heretical  opinions. 
But  in  truth,  it  is  not  the  actual  practice  of  the 
Primitive  Church,  which  I  am  concerned  with,  so 
much  as  its  principle.  Men  often  break  through  the 
rules,  which  they  set  themselves  for  the  conduct  of  life, 
with  or  without  good  reason.  If  it  was  the  professed 
principle  of  the  early  teachers,  to  speak  exoterically  to 
those  who  were  without  the  Church,  instances  of  a 
contrary  practice  but  prove  their  inconsistency  ; 
whereas  the  fact  of  the  existence  of  the  principle 
answers  the  purpose  which  is  the  ultimate  aim  of 
these  remarks,  viz.  it  accounts  for  those  instances  in 
the  teaching  of  the  Alexandrians,  whether  many  or 
few,  and  whether  extant  or  not  in  writing,  in  which 
they  were  silent  as  regards  the  mysterious  doctrines 
of  Christianity.  Indeed  it  is  evident,  that  anyhow 
the  Disciplma  Arcani  could  not  be  observed  for  any 
long  time  in  the  Church.  Apostates  would  reveal  its 
doctrines,  even  if  these  escaped  in  no  other  way. 
Perhaps  it  was  almost  abandoned,  as  far  as  men  of 
letters  were  concerned,  after  the  date  of  Ammonius  ; 
indeed  there  are  various  reasons  for  limiting  its  strict 
enforcement  to  the  end  of  the  second  century.  And 
it  is  plain,  that  during  the  time  when  the  sacred 
doctrines  were  passing  into  the  stock  of  public  know- 
ledge, Christian  controversialists  would  be  in  a 
difficulty  how  to  conduct  themselves,  what  to  deny, 

S1£CT,  m.j 

t  lexanand. 



^ixplaii!  or  complete,  in  the  popular  notions  of  their 
*^recd  ;  and  they  would  consequently  be  betrayed 
into  inconsistencies  of  statement,  and  vary  in  their 
xiiethod  of  disputing, 

The  DiscipHna  Arcani  being  supposed,  with  these 
Umitations,  to  have  had  a   real   existence,  I  observe 
further,   in    explanation    of    its    principle,   that    the 
lementary   information    given    to    the    heathen    or 
:cchumen   was   in   no   sense   undone   by  the   sub- 
[ucnt  secret  teaching,  which  was  in  fact  but  the 
iliing  up  of  a  bare  but  correct  outline.     The  contrary 
Iheory  was  maintained  by  the  Manichees,  who  repre- 
sented the  initiatory  discipline  as  founded  on  a  fiction 
hypothesis,  which   was    to   be   forgotten   by  the 
;mer  as  he  made  progress  in  the  real  doctrine  of 
gospels  ;  somewhat  after  the  manner  of  a  school 
the  present  day,  which  supposes  conversion  to  be 
effected  by  an  exhibition  of  free  promises  and  threats, 
and  an  appeal  to  our  moral  capabilities,  which  after 
mversion  are  discovered  to  have  no  foundation  in 
ict     But  "  Far  be  it  from  so  great  an  Apostle,"  says 
LUgustine,  speaking  of  St,  Paul,  "a  vessel  elect  of  God, 
'an  organ  ot  the  Holy  Ghost,  to  be  one  man  when  he 
preached,  another  when  he  wrote,  one  man  in  private, 
another  in  public.     He  was  made  all  to  all  men,  not 
by  the  craft  of  a  deceiver,  but  from  the  affection  of  a 
sympathizer,  succouring  the  diverse  diseases  of  souls 
wilh  the  diverse  emotions  of  compassion  ;  to  the  little 
ones  dispensing  the  lesser  doctrines,  not  false  ones, 
but  Ihc  higher  mysteries  to  the  perfect,  all  of  them, 
however,  true,  harmonious,  and  divine^." 

Augusr.  in  Aivcrs,  Leg.  et  Pio|.h.  lib. 


.     Idol 

not  and  il  in  this  exact 

a  in  Augustine's  (.'cnttw;  viilc  in  .A.lvcr 


iPmpl>.Iib.  ii.4.6.*c. 

54  The  CImrch  of  Alexandria,     [chap,  h:- 

Next,  the  truths  reserved  for  the  baptized  Christia 
were  not  put  forward  as  the  arbitrary  determinations 
of  individuals,  as  the  word  of  man,  but  rather  as  an 
apostolical  legacy,  preserved  and  dispensed  by  th^ 
Church.  Thus  Irena^us  when  engaged  in  refuting  the 
heretics  of  his  age,  who  appealed  from  the  text  of 
Scripture  to  a  sense  independent  of  it,  as  the  test 
between  truth  and  falsehood  in  its  contents,  says, 
"  We  know  the  doctrine  of  our  salvation  through  none 
but  those  who  have  transmitted  to  us  the  gospel,  first 
proclaiming  it,  then  (by  God's  will)  delivering  it  to 
us  in  the  Scriptures,  as  a  basis  and  pillar  of  our  faith. 
Nor  dare  we  affirm  that  their  announcements  were  made 
previously  to  their  attaining  perfect  knowledge,  as 
some  presume  to  say,  boasting  that  they  set  right  the 
Apostles 7."  He  then  proceeds  to  speak  of  the  clear- 
ness and  cogency  of  the  traditions  preserved  in  the 
Church,  as  containing  that  true  wisdom  of  the  perfect, 
of  which  St.  Paul  speaks,  and  to  which  the  Gnostics 
pretended.  And,  indeed,  without  formal  proofs  of 
the  existence  and  the  authority  in  primitive  times  of 
an  Apostolical  Tradition,  it  is  plain  that  there  must 
have  been  such  tradition,  granting  that  the  Apostles 
conversed,  and  their  friends  had  memories,  like  other 
men.  It  is  quite  inconceivable  that  they  should  not 
have  been  led  to  arrange  the  series  of  revealed  doctrines 
more  systematically  than  they  record  them  in  Scrip- 
ture, as  soon  as  their  converts  became  exposed  to  the 
attacks  and  misrepresentations  of  heretics  ;  unless  they 
were  forbidden  so  to  do,  a  supposition  which  cannot 
be  maintained.  Their  statements  thus  occasioned 
would  be  preserved,  as  a  matter  of  course ;  together 

'  Iren.  iii.  i.     Vide  also  Tertull.  de  Praescr.  Hserev.  23. 


1  those  other  secret  but  less  important  ti'ulhs,  to 

which  St.  Paul  -seems  to  allude,  and  which  the  cariy 

■ATitcrs  more  or  less  acknowledge,  whether  concerning 

types  of  the  Jewish  Church,  or  the  prospective 

fortunes  of  the  Christian^.     And  such  recollections  of 

apostolical  teaching  would  evidently  be  binding  on 

tile  faith  of  those  who  were  instructed  in  them ;  unless 

'  it  can  be  supposed,  that,  though  coming  from  inspired 

i'teachers,  they  were  not  of  divine  origin. 

-However,  it  must  not  be  supposed,  that  this  appeal 

*     Tradition  in  the  slightest  degree  disparages  the 

so\rereign  authority  and  sufficiency  of  Holy  Scripture, 

;        ^s    a  record  of  the  truth.     In  the  passage  from  Irena^us 

^^*t>ove  cited.  Apostolical  Tradition  is  brought  forward, 

^^^*>t  to  supersede  Scripture,  but  in  conjunction  with 

^^^•^  ripturc,    to    refute    the    self-authorized,    arbitrary 

^^^'^ctrines  of  the  heretics.     We  must  cautiously  dis- 

***>guish,  with  that  Father,  between  a  tradition  sup- 

r*lanting  or  peiverting   the   inspired   records,  and  a 

^''^^rroborating,  illustrating,  and  altogether  subordinate 

*~3dition.     It  is  of  the  latter  that  he  speaks,  classing 

_  *>e  traditionary  and  the  written  doctrine  together,  as 

-abstantially  one  and  the  same,  and  as  each  equally 

^'Jiposcd  to  the  profane  inventions  of  Valentinus  and 


Lastly,  the  secret  tradition  soon  ceased  to  exist  even 

^■»i  Uieory,     It  was  authoritatively  divulged,  and  per- 

;ictuated  in  the  form   of  symbols  according  as  the 

Successive  innovations  of  heretics  called  for  its  publi- 

I'CatJon.     In  the  creeds  of  the  early  Councils,  it  may  be 

I  Considered  as  having  come  to  light,  and  so  ended  ;  so 

I  that  whatever  has  not  been  thus  authenticated,  whether 

*  Aloihcim,  Jc  Itcb>  ancc  Const. 

56  Tli£  Church  of  Alexandria,    [chap.  i. 

it  was  prophetical  information,  or  comment  on  the  past 
dispensations^,  is,  from  the  circumstances  of  the  case, 
lost  to  the  Church.  What,  however,  was  then  (by- 
God's  good  providence)  seasonably  preserved,  is  in 
some  sense  of  apostolical  authority  still ;  and  at  least 
serves  the  chief  office  of  the  early  traditions,  viz.  that 
of  interpreting  and  harmonizing  the  statements  of 


In  the  passages  lately  quoted  from  Clement  and 
Cyril,  mention  was  made  by  those  writers  of  a  mode 
of  speaking,  which  was  intelligible  to  the  well-in- 
structed, but  conveyed  no  definite  meaning  to  ordinary 
hearers.  This  was  the  Allegorical  Method  ;  which 
well  deserves  our  attention  before  we  leave  the  subject 
of  the  Discipliiia  Arcaniy  as  being  one  chief  means  by 
which  it  was  observed.  The  word  allegorizing  must 
here  be  understood  in  a  wide  signification  ;  as  in- 
cluding in  its  meaning,  not  only  the  representation  of 
truths,  under  a  foreign,  though  analogous  exterior, 
after  the  manner  of  our  Lord's  parables,  but  the 
practice  of  generalizing  facts  into  principles,  of  adum- 
brating greater  truths  under  the  image  of  lesser,  of 
implying  the  consequences  or  the  basis  of  doctrines  in 
their  correlatives,  and  altogether  those  instances  of 
thinking,  reasoning,  and  teaching,  which  depend  upon 
the  use  of  propositions  which  are  abstruse,  and  of  con- 
nexions which  are  obscure,  and  which,  in  the  case  of 
uninspired  authors,  we  consider  profound,  or  poetical, 
or  enthusiastic,  or  illogical,  according  to  our  opinion 
of  those  by  whom  they  are  exhibited, 

•  a  Thes.  ii.  5.  15.     Heb.  y.  11. 

SECT.  III.]    The  Church  of  Alexandria. 


This  method  of  writing  was  the  national  peculiarity 
of  that  literature  in  which  the  Alexandrian  Churcli 
was  educated.  The  hieroglyphics  of  the  ancient 
Egyptians  mark  the  antiquity  of  a  practice,  which,  in 
a  later  age,  being  enriched  and  diversified  by  the 
genius  of  their  Greek  conquerors,  was  applied  as  a  key 
both  to  mythological  legends,  and  to  the  sacred  truths 
of  Scripture,  The  Stoics  were  the  first  to  avail  them- 
selves of  an  expedient  which  smoothed  the  deformities 
of  the  Pagan  creed.  The  Jews,  and  then  the  Chris- 
tians, of  Alexandria,  employed  it  in  the  interpretation 
of  the  inspired  writings.  Those  ^vritings  tliemselves 
have  certainly  an  allegorical  structure,  and  seem  to 
countenance  and  invite  an  allegorical  interpretation  ; 
and  in  consequence,  they  have  been  referred  by  some 
critics  to  one  and  the  same  heathen  origin,  as  if  Moses 
first,  and  then  Sl  Paul,  borrowed  their  symbolical 
system  respectively  from  the  Eg>-ptian  and  the  Alex- 
andrian philosophy. 

But  it  is  more  natural  to  consider  that  the  Divine 
Wisdom  used  on  the  sublimest  of  all  subjects,  media, 
which  wc  spontaneously  select  for  the  expression  of 
solemn  thought  and  elevated  emotion  ;  and  had  no\  *\ 
especial  regard  to  the  practice  in  any  particular 
country,  which  afforded  but  one  instance  of  the  oper-  ^.-^ 
P^ation  of  a  general  principle  of  our  nature.  When  the 
nind  is  occupied  by  some  vast  and  awful  subject  of 

mtemplation,  it  is  prompted  to  give  utterance  to  its 

tilings  in  a  figurative  style  ;  for  ordinaiy  words  will 
kt  convey  tlie   admiration,   nor   literal    words   the 
Pence  which  possesses  it ;  and  when,  dazzled  at 
ti  with  the  great  sight,  it  turns  away  for  relief,  it 
U  catches  in  every  new  object  which  it  encountets, 

58  The  Church  of  Alexandria,    [chap.  L 

glimpses  of  its  former  vision,  and  colours  its  whole 
range  of  thought  with  this  one  abiding  association. 
If,  however,  others  have  preceded  it  in  the  privilege 
of  such  contemplations,  a  well-disciplined  piety  will 
lead  it  to  adopt  the  images  which  they  have  invented, 
both  from  affection  for  what  is  familiar  to  it,  and  from 
a  fear  of  using  unsanctioned  language  on  a  sacred 
subject  Such  are  the  feelings  under  which  a  deeply 
impressed  mind  addresses  itself  to  the  task  of  disclos- 
ing even  its  human  thoughts ;  and  this  account  of  it, 
if  we  may  dare  to  conjecture,  in  its  measure  applies 
to  the  case  of  a  mind  under  the  immediate  influence 
of  inspiration.  Certainly,  the  matter  of  Revelation 
suggests  some  such  hypothetical  explanation  of  the 
structure  of  the  books  which  are  its  vehicle ;  in  which 
the  divinely-instructed  imagination  of  the  writers  is 
ever  glancing  to  and  fro,  connecting  past  things  with 
future,  illuminating  God's  lower  providences  and 
man's  humblest  services  by  allusions  to  the  relations  of 
the  evangelical  covenant,  and  then  in  turn  suddenly 
leaving  the  latter  to  dwell  upon  those  past  dealings  of 
God  with  man,  which  must  not  be  forgotten  merely 
because  they  have  been  excelled.  No  prophet  ends 
his  subject :  his  brethren  after  him  renew,  enlai^e, 
transfigure,  or  reconstruct  it ;  so  that  the  Bible,  though 
various  in  its  parts,  forms  a  whole,  grounded  on  a  few 
distinct  doctrinal  principles  discernible  throughout  it; 
and  is  in  consequence  intelligible  indeed  in  its  general 
drift,  but  obscure  in  its  text ;  and  even  tempts  the 
student,  if  I  may  so  speak,  to  a  lax  and  disrespectful 
interpretation  of  it.  History  is  made  the  external 
garb  of  prophecy,  and  persons  and  facts  become  the 
figures  of  heavenly  things.     I  need  only  refer,  by  way 

of  instance,  to  tlie  delineation  of  Abraham  as  the  type 
of  the  accepted  worshipper  of  God  ;  to  the  history  of 
the  lirazcn  serpent ;  to  the  prophetical  bearing  of  the 
"call  of  Israel  out  of  Egypt ;"  to  the  pen;onification 
of  the  Church  in  the  Apostolic  Epistles  as  the  reflected 
image  of  Christ ;  and,  further,  to  the  mystical  import, 
interpreted  by  our  Lord  Himself,  of  the  title  of  God 
as  the  God  of  the  Patriarchs.  Above  all  other 
subjects,  it  need  scarcely  be  said,  the  likeness  of  the 
promised  Mediator  is  conspicuous  thoughout  the 
sacred  volume  as  in  a  picture ;  moving  along  the 
line  of  tlie  history,  in  one  or  other  of  His  destined 
offices,  the  dispenser  of  blessings  in  Joseph,  the 
ms|)ircd  interpreter  of  truth  in  Moses,  the  conqueror 
"1  Joshua,  the  active  preacher  in  Samuel,  the  suffering 
'Combatant  in  David,  and  in  Solomon  the  triumphant 
■d  glorious  king. 

Moreover,  Scripture  assigns  the  same  uses  to  this 

^orical   style,   which   were   contemplated   by  the 

thers  when  they  made  it  subservient  to  the  Disciplina 

^  ^-eaiii ;    viz.   those  of  tiying  the  earnestness   and 

P^^ience    of   inquirers,   discriminating    between    the 

lud  and  the  humble,  and  conveying  instruction  to 

tlicvcrs,  and  that  in  the  most  permanently  impressive 

Ithout  the  world's  sharing  in  the  knowledge. 

ir  Lord's  remarks  on  the  design  of  his  own  parables, 

a  sufficient  evidence  of  this  intention. 

Thus  there  seemed  every  encouragement,  from  the 

njcture   of   Scripture,   from    the    apparent    causes 

"^■liich  led  to  that  stracture.  and  from  the  purposes  to 

^'iiich  it  was  actually  applied  by  its  Divine  Author,  to 

induce  the  Alexandrians   to    consider    its    text    as 

primarily  and  directly  the  instrument  of  an  allegorical 

I         primarily  an 

6o  The  Church  of  Alexandria,    [chap^  ^^ 

teaching.  And  since  it  sanctions  the  principle  Oi 
allegorizing  by  its  own  example,  they  would  not 
consider  themselves  confined  within  the  limits  of  the 
very  instances  which  it  supplies,  because  of  the  evident 
spiritual  drift  of  various  passages  which,  nevertheless, 
it  does  not  interpret  spiritually ;  thus  to  the  narrative 
contained  in  the  twenty-second  chapter  of  Genesis, 
few  people  will  deny  an  evangelical  import,  though  the 
New  Testament  itself  nowhere  assigns  it  Yet,  on  the 
other  hand,  granting  that  a  certain  liberty  of  interpre- 
tation, beyond  the  precedent,  but  according  to  the 
spirit  of  Scripture,  be  allowable  in  the  Christian 
teacher,  still  few  people  will  deny,  that  some  rule 
is  necessary  as  a  safeguard  against  its  abuse,  in  order 
to  secure  the  sacred  text  from  being  explained  away 
by  the  heretic,  and  misquoted  and  perverted  by  weak 
or  fanatical  minds.  Such  a  safeguard  we  shall  find 
in  bearing  cautiously  in  mind  this  consideration  :  viz. 
that  (as  a  general  rule),  every  passage  of  Scripture 
has  some  one  definite  and  sufficient  sense,  which  was 
prominently  before  the  mind  of  the  writer,  or  in  the 
intention  of  the  Blessed  Spirit,  and  to  which  all  other 
ideas,  though  they  might  arise,  or  be  implied,  still 
were  subordinate.  It  is  this  true  meaning  of  the  text, 
which  it  is  the  business  of  the  expositor  to  unfold. 
This  it  is,  which  every  diligent  student  will  think  it  a 
great  gain  to  discover ;  and,  though  he  will  not  shut 
his  eyes  to  the  indirect  and  instructive  applications  of 
which  the  text  is  capable,  he  never  will  so  reason  as  to 
forget  that  there  is  one  sense  peculiarly  its  own. 
Sometimes  it  is  easily  ascertained,  sometimes  it  can 
be  scarcely  conjectured  ;  sometimes  it  is  contained  in 
the  literal  sense  of  the  words  employed,  as  in  the 

SECT.  HI.]     The  Church  of  Alexandria, 

historical  parts  ;  sometimes  it  is  the  allegorical,  as  in 
our  Lord's  parables ;  or  sometimes  the  secondary 
sense  may  be  more  important  in  after  aj^es  than  the 
original,  as  in  the  instance  of  the  Jewish  ritual  ;  still 
in  all  cases  (to  speak  generally)  there  is  but  one  main 
pnnriary  sense,  whether  literal  or  figurative;  a  regard 
for  which  must  ever  keep  us  sober  and  reverent  in 
'he  employment  of  those  allegorisms,  which,  neverthe- 
less, our  Christian  liberty  does  not  altogether  forbid. 

The  protest  of  Scripture  against  ail  careless  exposi- 
•iotis  of  its   meaning,  is  strikingly    implied   in    the 
extreme  reserve  and  caution,  with  which  it  unfolds  its 
owrn  typical  signification  ;  for  instance,  in  the  Mosaic 
•^tual  no  hint  was  given  of  its  undoubted  prophetical 
^^^nractcr,  lest  an  excuse  should  be  furnished  to  the 
■'sraclitish    worshipper    for    undcr\-aluing    its   actual 
^c>»iimand3.     So,  again,  the  secondary  and  distinct 
"^  «^amng  of  prophecy,  is  commonly  hidden  from  view 
"  the  veil  of  the  literal  text,  lest  its  immediate  scope 
k-ould  be  overlooked  ;  when  that  is  once  fulfilled,  the 
«:csses  of  the  sacred  language  seem  to  open,  and 
*"%■€  up  the  further  truths  deposited  in  them.      Our 
— ord,   probably,   in    the    prophecy   recorded   in    the 
^-*ospeIs,  was  not  careful  (if  I  may  so  express  myself) 
^^lat   His   disciples  should   distinguish   between   His 
•^nal  and  immediate  coming  ;  thinking  it  a  less  error 
^Ttat  they  should  consider  the  last  day  approaching, 
Xliiui   that  they  should  foi^et  tJieir  own  duties  in  the 
Wnteniplation  of  the  future  fortunes  of  the  Church, 
Nay.  even  types  fulfilled,  if  they  be  historical,  seem 
metiincs  purposely  to  be  left  without  the  sanction  of 
^n  interpretation,  lest  we  should  neglect  the  instruc- 
tion still  conveyed  in  a  literal  narrative.     This  accounts 

I  waa  SI 

62  The  Church  of  Alexandria,    [chap,  "i* 

for  the  silence  obsei-ved  concerning  the  cvangeli^*^^ 
import,   to   which   I   have    already  referred,   of    t^^^ 
sacrifice  of  Isaac,  which  contains  a  definite  and  p>^^' 
manent  moral  lesson,  as  a  matter  of  fact,  howc^^^' 
clear  may  be  its  further  meaning  as  emblematical      ^ 
our  Lord's  sufferings  on  the  cross.     In  corroboration.     ^ 
this  remark,  let  it  be  observed,  that  there  seems       ^ 
have  been  in  the  Church  a  traditionary  explanatiort     ^ 
these  historical  types,  derived  from  the  Apostles,  b^  ^ 
kept  among  the  secret  doctrines,  as  being  dangercr  "■- 
to  the  majority  of  hearers  ^  ;  and  certainly  St.  Pa-^-J 
in  the  Epistle  to  the  Hebrews,  affords  us  an  instan  <^ 
of  such  a  tradition,  both  as  existing  and  as  secr^' 
(even  though  it  be  shown  to  be  of  Jewish  origin^:* 
when,    first    checking    himself    and   questioning   his 
brethren's  faith,  he  communicates,  not  without  hesi- 
tation, the  evangelical  scope  of  the  account  of  Mel- 
chisedec,  as  introduced  into  the  book  of  Genesis. 

As  to  the  Christian  writers  of  Alexandria,  if  they 
erred  in  their  use  of  the  Allegory,  their  error  did  not 
lie  in  the  mere  adoption  of  an  instrument  which  Philo 
or  the  Egyptian  hierophants  had  employed  (though 
this  is  sometimes  made  the  ground  of  objection),  for 
Scripture  itself  had  taken  it  out  of  the  hands  of  such 
authorities.  Nor  did  their  error  lie  in  the  mere 
circumstance  of  their  allegorizing  Scripture,  where 
Scripture  gave  no  direct  countenance  ;  as  if  we  might 
not  interpret  the  sacred  word  for  ourselves,  as  we 
interpret  the  events  of  life,  by  the  principles  which 
itself  supplies.  But  they  erred,  whenever  and  as  far 
as    they  carried   their  favourite   rule   of   exposition 

^  Vide  Mosheim,  de  Reb.  Ant.  Const,  saec.  ii.  §  34.     Ros^nmuUcr, 
Hist.  Interpr.  iii.  2.  §  r. 

p    •  1 

SKCT,  III.]     TJie  Church  of  Alexandria.  63   ] 

beyond  the  spirit  of  the  canon  above  laid  down,  so  as 
to  obscure  the  primary  meaninf;  of  Scripture,  and  to 
weaken  tlie  force  of  historical  facts  and  doctrinal 
declarations ;  and  much  more,  if  at  any  time  they 
degraded  the  inspired  text  to  the  office  of  conveying 
the  thoughts  of  uninspired  teachers  on  subjects  not 

And,   as   it   is   impossible  to  draw  a  precise  line 

between  the  use  and  abuse  of  allegorizing,  so  it  is 

impossible  also  to  ascertain  the  exact  degree  of  blame 

incurred  by  individual  teachers  who  familiarly  indulge 

in    it.      They  may  be  faulty  as   commentators,   yet 

instructive  as  devotional  writers  ;  and  their  hberty  in 

interpretation  is  to  be  regulated  by  the  state  of  mind 

'1  which  tliey  address  themselves  to  the  work,  and  by 

■'leir  proficiency  in  the  knowledge   and   practice  of 

t-'li  ristian  duty.     So  far  as  men  use  tlie  language  of 

t'x^  Bible  (as  is  often  done  in  poems  and  works  of 

"^^tion)  as  the  mere  instrument  of  a  cultivated  fancy, 

'•^     make  their  style  attractive  or  impressive,  so  far,  it 

'^  ■^eedless  to  say,  they  are  cj'iilty  of  a  great  irreverence 

^*^*x*ards  its  Divine  Author.     On  the  other  hand,  it  is 

^*-*  «T;ly  no  extravagance  to  assert  that  there  are  minds 

''^-^  gifted  and  disciplined  as  to  approach  the  position 

*^*^^ciipied  by  the  inspired  writers,  and  therefore  able  to 

^tSply  their  words  with  a  fitness,  and  entitled  to  do  so 

^^ith  a  freedom,  which  is  unintelligible  to  the  dull  or 

**cartless  criticism  of  inferior  understandings.     So  far 

^^cn  as  tlie  Alexandrian  Fathers  partook  of  such  a 

singular  gift  of  grace  (and  Origen  surely  bears  on  him 

Ihe  tokens  of  some  exalted  moral  dignit}'),  not  incited 

by  a  capricious  and  presumptuous  imagination,  but 

kuming  witli  that  vigorous  faith,  which,  seeing  God  in 

64  The  Clmrch  of  Alexandria,     [chap.   ^• 

all  things,  does  and  suffers  all  for  His  sake,  and,  v/hH^ 
filled  with  the  contemplation  of  His  supreme  glorj^^ 
still  discharges  each  command  in  the  exactness  of  it^ 
real   meaning,  in   the  same   degree   they  stand   no^ 
merely  excused,  but  are  placed  immeasurably  abov^ 
the  multitude  of  those  who  find  it  so  easy  to  censure 
them. — And  so  much  on  the  Allegory,  as  the  means 
of  observing  the  Disciplina  Arcani, 

The  same  method  of  interpretation  was  used  for 
another  purpose,  which  is  more  open  to  censure. 
When  Christian  controversialists  were  urged  by  objec- 
tions to  various  passages  in  the  history  of  the  Old 
Testament,  as  derogatory  to  the  Divine  Perfections  or 
to  the  Jewish  saints,  they  had  recourse  to  an  allegori- 
cal explanation  by  way  of  answer.  Thus  Origcn 
spiritualizes  the  account  of  Abraham's  denying  his 
wife,  the  polygamy  of  the  Patriarchs,  and  Noah's 
intoxication 2.  It  is  impossible  to  defend  such  a  mode 
of  interpretation,  which  seems  to  imply  a  want  of 
faith  in  those  who  had  recourse  to  it.  Doubtless  this 
earnestness  to  exculpate  the  saints  of  the  elder  cove- 
nant is  partly  to  be  attributed  to  a  noble  jealousy  for 
the  honour  of  God,  and  a  reverence  for  the  memory  of 
those  who,  on  the  whole,  rise  in  their  moral  attain- 
ments far  above  their  fellows,  and  well  deserve  the 
confidence  in  their  virtue  which  the  Alexandrians 
manifest.  Yet  God  has  given  us  rules  of  right  and 
wrong,  which  we  must  not  be  afraid  to  apply  in 
estimating  the  conduct  of  even  the  best  of  mere  men  ; 

*  Heut.  Origen.  p.  171,  RosenmuUcr  supra.     [On  this  subject,  vidt;  a 
striking  passage  in  Facundus,  Dcf.  Tr.  Cap.  xii.  1,  pp.  568-9.] 

SECT,  III,]     The  Church  of  Alexandria.  65 

though  errors  are  thereby  tlelectod,  the  scandal   of 

which  we  ourselves  have  to  bear  in  our  own  day.     So 

far  must  be  granted  in  fairness  ;  but  some  have  gone 

1  to  censure  the  principle  itself  vi  Inch  this  procedure 

involved  :  viz.   that  of  representing  religion,   for  the 

purpose  of  conciliating  the  heathen,  in  the  form  most 

attractive  to  their  prejudices  ;  and,  as  it  was  generally 

'^ceived  in  the  Primitive  Church,  and  the  considerations 

'^hich  it  involves  are  not  without  their  bearings  upon 

"'e  doctrinal  question  in  which  we  shall  be  presently 

.'^'^S^JS'^.  I  will  devote  some  space  here  to  the  exam- 

"^ation  of  it. 

The  mode  of  arguing  and  teaching  in  question 
^liich  is  called  econofiikal'^  by  the  ancients,  can 
*^arcely  be  disconnected  from  the  Disciplina  Arcaui, 
^s  will  appear  by  some  of  the  instances  which  follow, 
_*\ough  it  is  convenient  to  consider  it  by  itself.  If  it 
*s  necessary  to  contrast  the  two  with  each  other,  the 
'^ne  may  be  considered  as  withholding  the  truth,  and 
the  other  as  setting  it  out  to  advantage.  The 
Bconomy  is  certainly  sanctioned  by  St.  Paul  in 
his  own  conduct.  To  the  Jews  he  became  as  a  Jew, 
and  as  without  the  Law  to  the  heathen"*.  His 
behaviour  at  Athens  is  the  most  remarkable  instance 
in  his  history  of  this  method  of  acting.  Instead  of 
uttering  any  invective  against  their  Polytheism,  he 
began  a  discourse  upon  the  Unity  of  the  Divine 
Nature ;    and   then   proceeded   to  claim  the  altar  5, 

St.  Paul,  vide  Lardner's  Heathen 

'  [Vide  this  argumtnt  in  Ihc  mouth  of  Dionysiua  {in  Euscb.  Hist.  vii. 
,  oil  irivre;  ?rai/Tas,  &c.)  as  his  plea  for  liberty  of  worship,  with  the 

66  The  Church  of  Alexandria,     [chap.  I. 

consecrated  in  the  neighbourhood  to  the  unknown 
God,  as  the  property  of  Him  whom  he  preached  to 
them,  and  to  enforce  his  doctrine  of  the  Divine 
Immateriality,  not  by  miracles,  but  by  argument, 
and  that  founded  on  the  words  of  a  heathen  poet. 
This  was  the  example  which  the  Alexandrians  set 
before  them  in  their  intercourse  with  the  heathen,  as 
may  be  shown  by  the  following  instances. 

Theonas,  Bishop  of  Alexandria  (A.D.  282 — 3CX)), 
has  left  his  directions  for  the  behaviour  of  Christians 
who  were  in  the  service  of  the  imperial  court  The 
utmost  caution  is  enjoined  them,  not  to  give  offence 
to  the  heathen  emperor.  If  a  Christian  was  appointed 
librarian,  he  was  to  take  good  care  not  to  show  any 
contempt  for  secular  knowledge  and  the  ancient 
writers.  He  was  advised  to  make  himself  familiar 
with  the  poets,  philosophers,  orators,  and  historians, 
of  classical  literature ;  and,  while  discussing  their 
writings,  to  take  incidental  opportunities  of  recom' 
mending  the  Scriptures,  introducing  mention  of  Christ, 
and  by  degrees  revealing  the  real  dignity  of  Hia 

The  conversion  of  Gregory  of  Neocaisarea,  (A.D.  231) 
affords  an  exemplification  of  this  procedure  in  an 
individual  case.  He  had  originally  attached  himself 
to  the  study  of  rhetoric  and  the  law,  but  was  persuaded 
by  Origen,  whose  lectures  he  attended,  to  exchange 
these  pursuits,  first  for  science,  then  for  philosophy, 
then  for  theology,  so  far  as  right  notions  concerning 
religion  could    be   extracted  from   the   promiscuous, 

•  Rose's  Neander,  Eccl.  Hist.  voL  L  p.  145.  **Insurgerc  potent 
Christi  mentio,  explicabitur  paullAtim,  ejus  sola  diyinitas,"  Tillcm. 
Mem.  vol.  iv.  p.  240,  241. 

TT.  HI.]     T/i£  Church  of  Alexandria.  67 

rritings  of  the  various  philosophical  sects.  Thus, 
■while  professedly  teaching  him  Pagan  philosophy,  his 
skilful  master  insensibly  enlightened  him  in  the 
knowledge  of  the  Christian  faitL  Then  leading  him 
to  Scripture,  he  explained  to  him  its  difiicultics  as 
they  arose ;  till  Gregory,  overcome  by  the  force  of 
truth,  announced  to  his  instructor  his  intention  of 
exchanging  the  pursuits  of  this  world  for  the  service 
of  God  ^ 
Clement's  Stromateis  (A.D.  200),  a  work  which  has 
I  already  furnished  us  with  illustrations  of  the  Alexan- 
■dfian  metliod  of  teaching,  was  written  with  the  design 
Fof  converting  the  learned  heathen,  and  pursues  the 
same  plan  which  Origcn  adopted  towards  Gregorj'. 
The  author  therein  professes  his  wish  to  blend  together 
philosophy  and  religion,  refutes  those  who  censure  the 
former,  shows  the  advantage  of  it,  and  how  it  is  to  be 
applied.  This  leading  at  once  to  an  inquiry  concern- 
ing what  particular  school  of  philosophy  is  to  be  held 
of  divine  origin,  he  answers  in  a  celebrated  passage, 
that  all  are  to  be  referred  thither  as  far  as  they 
respectively  inculcate  the  principles  of  piety  and 
morality,  and  none,  except  as  containing  the  portions 
and  forcshadowings  of  the  truth.  "  By  philosophy," 
he  says,  "  I  do  not  mean  the  Stoic,  nor  the  Platonic, 
nor  the  Epicurean  and  Aristotelic,  but  all  good 
doctrine  in  every  one  of  the  schools,  all  precepts  of 
holiness  combined  with  religious  knowledge.  All  this, 
I  taken  together,  or  the  Eclectic,  I  call  philosophy: 
■whereas  the  rest  are  mere  forgeries   of  the  human 

^  *  Tbis  WM  Origen's  Usual  method,  vide  Euscb.  EccI,  llisi.  ri.  i8. 
He  tias  signified  It  himself  in  thcst  woids!  -yvfivao-wv  fici' ^/«cv  <ri-at 
*V  ^VX9*  ^  SvSfmnlvijv  o-o^tav,  riXoi  Si  rgr  $€iav.  Ctanir, 

F  2 


68  The  Church  of  Alexaftdria.    [chap.  i. 

intellect,  and  in  no  respect  to  be  accounted  divine  8** 
At  the  same  time,  to  mark  out  the  peculiar  divinity 
of  Revealed  Religion,  he  traces  all  the  philosophy  of 
the  heathen  to  the  teaching  of  the  Hebrew  sages, 
earnestly  maintaining  its  entire  subserviency  to  Chris- 
tianity, as  but  the  love  of  that  truth  which  the 
Scriptures  really  impart 

The  same  general  purpose  of  conciliating  the 
heathen,  and  (as  far  as  might  be,)  indulging  the 
existing  fashions  to  which  their  literature  was  sub- 
jected, may  be  traced  in  the  slighter  compositions  ^ 
which  the  Christians  published  in  defence  of  their 
religion',  being  what  in  this  day  might  be  called 
pamphlets,  written  in  imitation  of  speeches  after 
the  manner  of  Isocrates,  and  adorned  with  those 
graces  of  language  which  the  schools  taught,  and 
th^  inspired  Apostle  has  exhibited  in  his  Epistle  to 
the  Hebrews.  Clement's  Exhortation  to  the  Gentiles 
is  a  specimen  of  this  style  of  writing  ;  as  also  those  of 
Athenagoras  and  Tatian,  and  that  ascribed  to  Justin 

Again  : — the  last-mentioned  Father  supplies  us 
with  an  instance  of  an  economical  relinquishment 
of  a  sacred  doctrine.  When  Justin  Martyr,  in  his 
argument  with  the  Jew  Trypho,  (A.D.  150.)  finds 
himself  unable  to  convince  him  from  the  Old  Testa- 
ment of  the  divinity  of  Christ,  he  falls  back  upon  the 
doctrine  of  His  divine  Mission,  as  if  this  were  a  point 

•  Clem.  Strom,  i.  7. 

•  Xoyofc.  [Such  are  those  (Pagan)  of  Maximus  Tyrius.  Three 
sacred  narratives  of  Eusebius  Emesenus  are  to  be  found  at  Vienna. 
Aug^sti  has  published  one  of  them :  Bonn,  1820.  Vide  Lambec.  BibL 
Vind.  iv.  p.  286.] 

^  Dodwell  in  Iren.  Diss.  vi.  $  14.  16. 

SF.CT.  III.]     Tfie  Church  of  Alexandria. 

indisputable  on  the  one  hand,  and  on  the  other, 
affording  a  sufficient  ground,  from  which  to  advance, 
when  expedient,  to  the  proof  of  the  full  evangelical 
truth^.  In  the  same  passage,  moreover,  as  arguing 
with  an  unbeliever,  he  permits  himself  to  speak  with- 
out an  anathema  of  those  {the  Ebionites)  who  pro- 
fessed Christianity,  and  yet  denied  Christ's  divinity. 
Athanasius  himself  fully  recognizes  the  propriety  of 
this  concealment  of  the  doctrine  on  a  fitting  occasion, 
and  thus  accounts  for  the  silence  of  the  Apostles 
concerning  it,  in  their  speeches  recorded  in  the  book 
of  Acts,  viz.  that  they  were  unwilling,  by  a  disclosure 
of  it,  to  prejudice  the  Jews  against  those  miracles,  the 
acknowledgment  of  which  was  a  first  step  towards 
their  receiving  it^. 

Gregory  of  NeocKsarea  (A.D.  240 — 270),  whose  con- 
vasion  by  Origen  has  already  been  adduced  in  illus- 
tration, furnishes  us  in  his  own  conduct  with  a  similar 
but  stronger  instance  of  an  economical  concealment 
of  the  full  truth.  It  seems  tliat  certain  heretical 
teachers,  in  the  time  of  Basil,  ascribed  to  Gregory, 
whether  by  way  of  censure  or  in  self-defence,  the 
Sabellian  view  of  the  Trinity  ;  and,  moreover,  the 
belief  that  Christ  was  a  creature.  The  occasion  of 
these  statements,  as  imputed  to  him,  was  a  vivA  voce 
controversy  with  a  heathen,  which  had  been  taken 
down  in  writing  by  the  bystanders.  The  charge  of 
Sabellianism  is  refuted  by  Gregoiy's  extant  writings  ; 
both  imputations,  however,  are  answered  by  St.  Basil, 

■  Vidle  Bull,  Judic.  Eccl.  vK  7. 

•  Alhan>  dc  Sent.  Dionys.  8.     Theodoret,  Chrysostora,  and  otlifts  say 
"  ■     Soicer.  Thesaurus,  wrb  srtoi,\v,av,  and   Whitby  on 

70  The  Church  of  Alexandria,    [chap.  i. 

and  that,  on  the  principle  of  controversy  which  I  have 
above  attempted  to  describe.  "When  Gregory,"  he 
says,  "  declared  that  the  Father  and  Son  were  two  in 
our  conception  of  them,  one  in  hypostasis^  he  spoke 
not  as  teaching  doctrine,  but  as  arguing  with  an 
unbeliever,  viz.  in  his  disputation  with  iElianus  ;  but 
this  distinction  our  heretical  opponents  could  not 
enter  into,  much  as  they  pride  themselves  on  the 
subtlety  of  their  intellect.  Even  granting  there  were 
no  mistakes  in  taking  the  notes  (which,  please  God,  it 
is  my  intention  to  prove  from  the  text  as  it  now 
stands),  it  is  to  be  supposed,  that  he  did  not  think  it 
necessary  to  be  very  exact  in  his  doctrinal  terms, 
when  employed  in  converting  a  heathen  ;  but  in  some 
things,  even  to  concede  to  his  feelings,  that  he  might 
gain  him  over  to  the  cardinal  points.  Accordingly, 
you  may  find  many  expressions  there,  of  which 
heretics  now  take  great  advantage,  such  as  *  creature,* 
*made,*  and  the  like.  So  again,  many  statements 
which  he  has  made  concerning  the  Incarnation,  are 
referred  to  the  Divine  Nature  of  the  Son  by  those 
who  do  not  skilfully  enter  into  his  meaning  ;  as, 
indeed,  is  the  very  expression  in  question  which  they 
have  circulated"^." 

I  will  here  again  instance  a  parallel  use  of  the 
Economy  on  the  part  of  Athanasius  himself,  and  will 
avail  myself  of  the  words  of  the  learned  Petavius 
"  Even  Athanasius,"  he  says,  "  whose  very  gift  it  was, 
above  all  other  Fathers,  to  possess  a  clear  and 
accurate  knowledge  of  the  Catholic  doctrine  con- 
cerning the  Trinity,  so  that  all  succeeding  antagonists 
of  Arianism  may  be  truly  said  to  have  derived  their 

^  Basil.  Epist.  ccx.  §  5. 

:  m.]     The  Church  of  Alexandria. 


powers  and  their  arguments  from  him,  even  this  keen 
and  vigilant  champion  of  orthodoxy,  in  aiding  with 
the  Gentiles  for  the  Divinity  and  incarnation  of  the 
Word,  urges  them  with  considerations  drawn  from 
their  own  philosophical  notions  concerning  Him. 
Not  that  he  was  ignorant  how  unlike  orthodoxy,  and 
how  like  Arianism,  such  notions  were,  but  he  bore 
in  mind  the  necessity  of  favourably  disposing  the 
minds  of  the  Gentiles  to  listen  to  his  teaching ;  and 
he  was  aware  that  it  was  one  thing  to  lay  the  rudi- 
ments of  the  faith  in  an  ignorant  or  heathen  mind, 
and  another  to  defend  the  faith  against  heretics,  or  to 
teach  it  dogmatically.  For  instance,  in  answering 
their  objection  to  the  Divine  Word  having  taken  flesh, 
which  especially  offended  them,  he  bids  them  consider 
M-hether  they  are  not  inconsistent  in  dwelling  upon 
this,  while  they  themselves  believe  that  there  is  a 
Divine  Word,  the  presiding  principle  and  soul  of  the 
world,  tlirough  the  movements  of  which  He  is  visibly 
tJisplayed ;  '  for  what  (he  asks)  does  Christianity  say 
more  than  that  the  Word  has  presented  Himself  to 
the  inspection  of  our  senses  by  the  instrumentality  of 
a  body  ? '  And  yet  it  is  certain  that  the  Father  and 
the  pervading  Word  of  the  Platonists,  differed 
materially  from  the  Sacred  Persons  of  the  Trinity, 
as  we  hold  the  doctrine,  and  Athanasius  too,  in  every 
page  of  his  writingsS." 

There  are  instances  in  various  ways  of  the  econo- 
I  4nical  method,  that  is,  of  accommodation  to  the  feelings 
md  prejudices  of  the  hearer,  in  leading  him  to  tlie 

Vea.1.  de  Trin.  ii.  prwf.  3,  \  s-      [abridged  a 

fd.    Vide 
iii.  i.jip. 

72  The  Chtnrh  of  Alexandria,    [chap.  i. 

reception  of  a  novel  or  unacceptable  doctrine.  It 
professes  to  be  founded  in  the  actual  necessity  of  the 
case  ;  because  those  who  are  strangers  to  the  tone  of 
thought  and  principles  of  the  speaker,  cannot  at  once 
be  initiated  into  his  system,  and  because  they  must 
begin  with  imperfect  views  ;  and  therefore,  if  he  is  to 
teach  them  at  all,  he  must  put  before  them  large  pro- 
positions, which  he  has  afterwards  to  modify,  or  make 
assertions  which  are  but  parallel  or  analogous  to  the 
truth,  rather  than  coincident  with  it.  And  it  cannot 
be  denied  that  those  who  attempt  to  speak  at  all 
times  the  naked  truth,  or  rather  the  commonly- 
received  expression  of  it,  are  certain,  more  than  other 
men,  to  convey  wrong  impressions  of  their  meaning 
to  those  who  happen  to  be  below  them,  or  to  differ 
widely  from  them,  in  intelligence  and  cast  of  mind. 
On  the  other  hand,  the  abuse  of  the  Economy  in  the 
hands  of  unscrupulous  reasoners,  is  obvious.  Even 
the  honest  controversialist  or  teacher  will  find  it  very 
difficult  to  represent  without  misrepresenting,  what  it 
is  yet  his  duty  to  present  to  his  hearers  with  caution 
or  reserve.  Here  the  obvious  rule  to  guide  our 
practice  is,  to  be  careful  ever  to  maintain  substantial 
truth  in  our  use  of  the  economical  method.  It  is  thus 
we  lead  forward  children  by  degrees,  influencing  and 
impressing  their  minds  by  means  of  their  own  confined 
conceptions  of  things,  before  we  attempt  to  introduce 
them  to  our  own ;  yet  at  the  same  time  modelling 
their  thoughts  according  to  the  analogy  of  those  to 
which  we  mean  ultimately  to  bring  them.  Again,  the 
information  given  to  the  blind  man,  that  scarlet  was 
like  the  sound  of  a  trumpet,  is  an  instance  of  an  unex- 
ceptionable economy,  since  it  was  as  true  as  it  could 

SECT,  m.j 

be  under  the  circumstances  of  the  case,  conveying  a 
substantially  correct  impression  as  far  as  it  went. 

In  applying  this  rule  to  the  instances  above  given, 
it  is  plain  that  Justin,  Gregory,  or  Athanasius,  were 
justifiable  or  not  in  their  Economy,  according  as  they 
did  or  did  not  practically  mislead  their  opponents. 
Merely  to  leave  a  man  in  errors  which  he  had  inde- 
pendently of  us.  or  to  abstain  from  removing  them, 
cannot  be  blamed  as  a  fault,  and  may  be  a  duty ; 
though  it  is  so  difficult  to  hit  the  mark  in  these  per- 
plexing cases,  that  it  is  not  wonderful,  should  these 
or  other  Fathers  have  failed  at  times,  and  said  more  or 
less  than  was  proper.  Again,  in  the  instances  of 
St.  Paul,  Theonas,  Origen,  and  Clement,  the  doctrine 
which  their  conduct  implies,  is  the  Divinity  of  Pagan- 
ism ;  a  true  doctrine,  though  the  heathen  whom  they 
addressed  would  not  at  first  rightly  apprehend  it. 
But  I  am  aware  that  some  persons  will  differ  from  me 
here,  and  others  will  be  perplexed  about  my  meaning. 
So  let  this  be  a  reserved  point,  to  be  considered  when 
we  have  finished  the  present  subject. 

The  Alexandrian  Father  who  has  already  been 
quoted,  accurately  describes  the  rules  w'hich  should 
guide  the  Christian  in  speaking  and  acting  econo- 
mically. "  Being  fully  persuaded  of  the  omnipresence 
of  God,"  says  Clement,  "and  ashamed  to  come  short 
of  the  truth,  he  is  satisfied  with  the  approval  of  God, 
and  of  his  own  conscience.  Whatever  is  in  his  mind,  is 
also  on  his  tongue ;  towards  those  who  arc  fit 
recipients,  both  in  speaking  and  living,  he  har- 
monizes his  profession  with  his  thoughts.  He  both 
^^H'thinks  and  speaks  the  truth ;  except  when  careful 
^^^Ureatment  is  necessary,  and  then,  as  a  physician  for  the 

74  TIu  Church  of  Alexaitdria.    fcHAP.  L 

good  of  his  patients,  he  will  lie,  or  rather  utter  a  lie, 
as  the  Sophists  say.  For  instance,  the  noble  Apostle 
circumcised  Timothy,  while  he  cried  out  and  wrote 
down,  *  Circumcision  availeth  not*  .  .  Nothing,  how- 
ever, but  his  neighbours  good  will  lead  him  to  do 
this. .  .  He  gives  himself  up  for  the  Church,  for  the 
friends  whom  he  hath  begotten  in  the  faith  for  an 
ensample  to  those  who  have  the  ability  to  undertake 
the  high  office  (economy)  of  a  religious  and  charitable 
teacher,  for  an  exhibition  of  truth  in  his  words,  and 
for  the  exercise  of  love  towards  the  Lord  6." 

Further  light  will  be  thrown  upon  the  doctrine  of 
the  Economy,  by  considering  it  as  exemplified  in  the 
dealings  of  Providence  towards  man.  The  word 
occurs  in  St.  Paul's  Epistle  to  the  Ephesians,  where  it 
is  used  for  that  series  of  Divine  appointments  viewed 
as  a  whole,  by  which  the  Gospel  is  introduced  and 
realized  among  mankind,  being  translated  in  our 
version  ** dispensation"  It  will  evidently  bear  a  wider 
sense,  embracing  the  Jewish  and  patriarchal  dispensa- 
tions, or  any  Divine  procedure,  greater  or  less,  which 
consists  of  means  and  an  end.  Thus  it  is  applied  by 
the  Fathers,  to  the  history  of  Christ's  humiliation,  as 
exhibited  in  the  doctrines  of  His  incarnation,  ministry, 
atonement,  exaltation,  and  mediatorial  sovereignty, 
and,  as  such  distinguished  from  the  '' theologia''  or 
the  collection  of  truths  relative  to  His  personal  in- 
dwelling in  the  bosom  of  God.  Again,  it  might  with 
equal  fitness  be  used  for  the  general  system  of  provi- 

•  Clem.  Strom,  vii.  8,  9  (abridged).  [Vide  Plat.  Leg.  ii.  8,  o^JiroTC 
^cvScTcu,  Kov  i/r€v8os  ^^fQ'  Scxt.Empif.adv.  Log.  p.  378,  withnotesT 
and  IT.  On  this  whole  subject,  vide  the  Author's  "  Apologia,"  notes 
F  and  G,  pp.  343  -363.] 

PsECT.  m.]    The  Church  of  Alexandria,  75 

dence  by  which  the  world's  course  is  carried  on  ;  or, 
again,  for  the  work  of  creation  itself,  as  opposed  to 
the  absolute  perfection  of  the  Eternal  God,  that 
internal  concentration  of  His  Attributes  in  self-con- 
templation, which  took  place  on  tlie  seventh  day, 
when  He  rested  from  all  the  work  which  He  had 
made.  And  since  this  everlasting  and  unchangeable 
quiescence  is  the  simplest  and  truest  notion  we  can 
obtain  of  the  Deity,  it  seems  to  follow,  that  strictly 
speaking,  all  those  so-called  Economics  or  dispensa- 
tions, which  display  His  character  in  action,  are  but 
condescensions  to  the  infirmity  and  peculiarity  of 
our  minds,  shadowy  representations  of  realities  which 
are  incomprehensible  to  creatures  such  as  ourselves, 
who  estimate  ever^'thing  by  the  rule  of  associa- 
tion and  arrangement,  by  the  notion  of  a  purpose 
and  plan,  object  and  means,  parts  and  whole.  What, 
for  instance,  is  the  revelation  of  general  moral  laws, 
their  infringement,  their  tedious  victory,  the  en- 
durance of  the  wicked,  and  the  "  winking  at  the 
times  of  ignorance,"  but  an  "  Ecoiiomia  "  of  greater 
truths  untold,  the  best  practical  communication  of 
them  which  our  minds  in  their  present  state  will 
admit  ?  What  are  the  phenomena  of  the  external 
world,  but  a  divine  mode  of  conveying  to  the 
mind  the  realities  of  existence,  individuality,  and  the 
influence  of  being  on  being,  the  best  possible,  though 
beguiling  the  imagination  of  most  men  with  a  harmless 
but  unfounded  belief  in  matter  as  distinct  from  the 
impressions  on  their  senses?  This  at  least  is  the 
opinion  of  some  philosophere,  and  whether  the  par- 
^H^  tWlar  theory  be  right  or  wrong,  it  serves  as  an  illus- 
^^■tntion  hero  of  the  great  truth  which  we  are  consider- 

76  Tlu  Church  of  AUxarsdrieu    [chap.  i. 

fn<^".  Or  wvrat.  a^ain,  as  otiiers  fc^Id,  is  the  popular 
ar^-unier*t  frotn  6nzl  ca^jses  bet  an  ^  EccKamiaT  suited 
to  the  practical  wants  of  the  miiltitode^  as  teaching 
them  in  the  simplest  wajr  the  actfre  presence  of  Him, 
who  after  all  dwells  intellt^Iy,  prior  to  argument,  in 
their  heart  and  conscience?  And  though  on  the 
mind's  first  mastering  this  general  principle;  it  seems 
to  it%lf  at  the  moment  to  have  cut  all  the  ties  which 
bind  it  to  the  unf^'erse;  and  to  be  floated  off  upon  the 
ocean  of  interminable  scepticism  :  yet  a  true  sense  of 
its  own  weakness  brings  it  back,  the  instinctive  per- 
suasion that  it  must  be  intended  to  rely  on  something; 
and  therefore  that  the  information  given,  though 
philosophically  inaccurate,  must  be  practically  certain; 
a  sure,  confidence  in  the  love  of  Him  who  cannot 
deceive,  and  who  has  impressed  the  image  and 
thought  of  Himself  and  of  His  will  upon  our  original 
nature.  Here  then  we  may  lay  down  with  certainty 
^A  a  consolatory  truth,  what  was  but  a  rule  of  duty 
when  we  were  reviening  the  Economies  of  man  ;  viz. 
that  whatever  is  told  us  from  heaven,  is  true  in  so  full 
and  substantial  a  sense,  that  no  possible  mistake  can 
^xv^ii  przctically  from  following  it.  And  it  may  be 
added,  on  the  other  hand,  that  the  greatest  risk  will 
result  from  attempting  to  be  wiser  than  God  has 
marie  us,  and  to  outstep  in  the  least  degree  the  circle 
which  is  prescribed  as  the  limit  of  our  range  This  is 
but  the  duty  of  implicit  faith  in  Him  who  knows  what 
is  good  for  us,  and  who  has  ordained  that  in  our  prac- 
tical concerns  intellectual  ability  should  do  no  more 
than  enlighten  us  in  the  difficulties  of  our  situation, 
not  in  the  solutions  of  them.  Accordingly,  we  may 
safely  admit  the  first  chapter  of  the  book  of  Job,  the 

SECT.  HI.]     T^e  Church  of  Alexandria.  77 

twenty-second  of  the  first  book  of  Kings,  and  other 
passages  of  Scripture,  to  be  Economies,  that  is,  repre- 
sentations conveying  substantial  truth  in  the  form  in 
which  we  are  best  able  to  receive  it ;  and  to  be 
accepted  by  us  and  used  in  their  literal  sense,  as  our 
highest  wisdom,  because  we  have  no  poWers  of  mind 
equal  to  the  more  philosophical  determination  of 
them.  Again,  the  Mosaic  Dispensation  was  an 
i£conomy,  simulating  (so  to  say)  unchangeableness, 
when  from  the  first  it  was  destined  to  be  abolished. 
And  our  Blessed  Lord's  conduct  on  earth  abounds 
with  the  Uke  gracious  and  considerate  condescension 
to  the  weakness  of  His  creatures,  who  would  have 
been  driven  either  to  a  terrified  inaction  or  to  presump- 
tion, had  tliey  known  then  as  aftenvards  the  secret  of 
His  Divine  Nature. 

I  will  add  two  or  three  instances,  in  which  this  doc- 
trine of  the  Divine  Economies  has  been  wrongly  ap- 
plied ;  and  I  do  so  from  necessity,  lest  the  foregoing 
remarks  should  seem  to  countenance  errors,  which  I 
am  most  desirous  at  all  times  and  every  where  to  pro- 
test against. 

For  instance,  the  Economy  has  been  employed  to 
the  disparagement  of  the  Old  Testament  Saints  ;  as 
if  the  praise  bestowed  on  them  by  Almighty  God  were 
but  economically  given,  that  is,  with  reference  to  their 
times  and  circumstances;  their  real  insight  into  moral 
truth  being  possibly  below  the  average  standard  of 
knowledge  in  matters  of  faith  and  practice  received 
among  nations  rescued  from  the  rude  and  semi-savage 
state  in  which  they  are  considered  to  have  lived.  And 
again,  it  has  been  even  supposed,  that  injunctions,  as 
well  as  praise,  have  been  thus  given  them,  which  an 

78  The  C/mrck  of  Alexandria,    [chap.,  i. 

enlightened  age  is  at  liberty  to  criticize  ;  for  instance, 
the  command  to  slay  Isaac  has  sometimes  been  viewed 
as  an  economy,  based  upon  certain  received  ideas  in 
Abraham's  day,  concerning  the  innocence  and  merit 
of  human  sacrifice.  It  is  enough  to  have  thus  dis-^ 
claimed  participation  in  these  theories,  which  of  course 
are  no  objection  to  the  general  doctrine  of  the  Econ- 
omy, unless  indeed  it  could  be  shown,  that  those  who 
hold  a  principle  are  answerable  for  all  the  applica- 
tions arbitrarily  made  of  it  by  the  licentious  ingenuity 
of  others. 

Again,  the  principle  of  the  Economy  has  sometimes 
been  applied  to  the  interpretation  of  the  New  Testa- 
ment. It  has  been  said,  for  instance,  that  the  Epistle 
to  the  Hebrews  does  not  state  the  simple  truth  in  the 
sense  in  which  the  Apostles  themselves  believed  it, 
but  merely  as  it  would  be  palatable  to  the  Jews.  The 
advocates  of  this  hypothesis  have  proceeded  to  main- 
tain, that  the  doctrine  of  the  Atonement  is  no  part  of 
the  essential  and  permanent  evangelical  system.  To 
a  conscientious  reasoner,  however,  it  is  evident,  that 
the  structure  of  the  Epistle  in  question  is  so  intimately 
connected  with  the  reality  of  the  expiatory  scheme, 
that  to  suppose  the  latter  imaginary,  would  be  to  im- 
pute to  the  writer,  not  an  economy  (which  always  pre- 
serves substantial  truth),  but  a  gross  and  audacious 

A  parallel  theory  to  this  has  been  put  forward  by 
men  of  piety  among  the  Predestinarians,  with  a.  view 
of  reconciling  the  inconsistency  between  their  faith  and 
practice.  They  have  suggested,  that  the  promises  and 
threats  of  Scripture  are  founded  on  an  economy,  which 
is  needful  to  effect  the  conversion  of  the  elect,  but 

SECT.  III.]    The  Church  of  Alexandria. 

clears  up  and  vanishes  under  the  light  of  the  true 
spiritual  perception,  to  which  the  converted  at  length 
attain.  This  has  been  noticed  in  another  connexion, 
and  will  here  serve  as  one  among  many  illustrations 
whidi  might  be  given,  of  die  fallacious  application  of 
a  true  principle.    And  so  much  upon  the  Economia. 

A  question  was  Just  now  reserved,  as  interfering 
with  the  subject  then  before  us.  In  what  sense  can  it 
be  said,  that  there  is  any  connection  between  Pagan- 
ism and  Christianity  so  real,  as  to  warrant  the 
preacher  of  the  latter  to  conciliate  idolaters  by 
allusion  to  it  ?  St.  Paul  evidently  connects  the  true 
religion  with  the  existing  systems  which  he  laboured 
to  supplant,  in  his  speech  to  the  Athenians  in  the 
Acts,  and  his  example  is  a  sufficient  guide  to  mission- 
aries now,  and  a  full  justification  of  the  line  of 
conduct  pursued  by  the  Alexandrians,  in  the  instances 
similar -to  it;  but  are  we  able  to  account  for  his 
conduct,  and  ascertain  the  principle  by  which  it  was 
regulated  ?  I  think  we  can  ;  and  the  exhibition  of  it 
will  set  before  the  reader  another  doctrine  of  the 
Alexandrian  school,  which  it  is  as  much  to  our 
purpose  to  understand,  and  which  I  shall  call  the 
divinity  of  Traditionary  Religion. 
\  We  know  well  enough  for  practical  purposes  what 
pis  meant  by  Revealed  Religion ;  viz.  that  it  is  the 
doctrine  taught  in  the  Mosaic  and  Christian  dispensa- 
tions, and  contained  in  the  Holy  Scriptures,  and  is 
from  God  in  a  sense  in  which  no  other  doctrine  can 
be  said  to  be  from  Him.  Yet  if  we  would  speak 
correctly,  we  must  confess,  on  the  authority  of  the 
Bible  itself,  that  all  knowledge  pf  religion  is  from 

8o  Tlie  Church  of  Alexafidria.    [chap.  I. 

Him,  and  not  only  that  which  the  Bible  has  trans- 
mitted to  us.  There  never  was  a  time  when  God  had 
not  spoken  to  man,  and  told  him  to  a  certain  extent 
his  duty.  His  injunctions  to  Noah,  the  common 
father  of  all  mankind,  is  the  first  recorded  fact  of  the 
sacred  history  after  the  deluge.  Accordingly,  we  are 
expressly  told  in  the  New  Testament,  that  at  no  time 
He  left  Himself  without  witness  in  the  world,  and  that 
in  every  nation  He  accepts  those  who  fear  and  obey 
Him.  It  would  seem,  then,  that  there  is  something 
true  and  divinely  revealed,  in  every  religion  all  over 
the  earth,  overloaded,  as  it  may  be,  and  at  times  even 
stifled  by  the  impieties  which  the  corrupt  will  and 
understanding  of  man  have  incorporated  with  it. 
Such  are  the  doctrines  of  the  power  and  presence  of 
an  invisible  God,  of  His  moral  law  and  governance,  of 
the  obligation  of  duty,  and  the  certainty  of  a  just 
judgment,  and  of  reward  and  punishment,  as  eventually 
dispensed  to  individuals  ;  so  that  Revelation,  properly 
speaking,  is  an  universal,  not  a  local  gift;  and  the 
distinction  between  the  state  of  Israelites  formerly  and 
Christians  now,  and  that  of  the  heathen,  is,  not  that 
we  can,  and  they  cannot  attain  to  future  blessedness, 
but  that  the  Church  of  God  ever  has  had,  and  the  rest 
of  mankind  never  have  had,  authoritative  documents  of 
truth,  and  appointed  channels  of  communication  with 
Him.  The  word  and  the  Sacraments  are  the  charac- 
teristic of  the  elect  people  of  God  ;  but  all  men  have 
had  more  or  less  the  guidance  of  Tradition,  in  addition 
to  those  internal  notions  of  right  and  wrong  which  the 
Spirit  has  put  into  the  heart  of  each  individual. 

This  vague  and  uncertain  family  of  religious  truths, 
originally  from  God,  but  sojourning  without  the  sane- 

SECT,  in.]     The  Church  of  Alexandria. 

tion  of  miracle,  or  a  definite  home,  as  pilgrims  up  and 
down  the  world,  and  discernible  and  separable  from 
the  corrupt  legends  with  which  they  arc  mixed,  by  the 
spiritual  mind  alone,  may  be  called  the  Dispensation  of 
Faganiivi,  after  tlie  example  of  the  learned  Father 
already  quoted  7,  And  further.  Scripture  gives  us 
reason  to  believe  that  the  traditions,  thus  originally 
delivered  to  mankind  at  large,  have  been  secretly 
re-animated  and  enforced  by  new  communications 
Irom  the  unseen  world  ;  though  these  were  not  of 
such  a  nature  as  to  be  produced  as  evidence,  or  used 
as  criteria  and  tests,  and  roused  the  attention  rather 
than  informed  the  understandings  of  the  heathen. 
The  book  of  Genesis  contains  a  record  of  the  Dispen- 
sation of  Natural  Religion,  or  Paganism,  as  well  as  of 
the  patriarchal.  The  dreams  of  Pharaoh  and  Abime- 
lech.  as  of  Nebuchadnezzar  aftenvards,  are  instances 
of  the  dealings  of  God  with  those  to  whom  He  did  not 
vouchsafe  a  written  revelation.  Or  should  it  be  said, 
that  these  particular  cases  merely  come  within  the 
range  of  the  Divine  supernatural  Governance  which 
was  in  their  neighbourhood, — an  assertion  which 
requires  proof, — let  the  book  of  Job  be  taken  as  a  less 
suspicious  instance  of  the  dealings  of  God  with  the 
heathen.  Job  was  a  pagan  in  the  same  sense  in  which 
the  Eastern  nations  are  Pagans  in  the  present  day. 
He  lived  among  idolatersS,  yet  he  and  his  friends  had 
'  beared  themselves  from  the  superstitions  with  which 
tlie  true  creed  was  beset ;  and  while  one  of  them  was 

'  Clement  sayn,  T^  ^lAttroi^v  'EAAjjiriv  mov  Smfit'imp'  oiKtioF 
i^<j<r9ttt,  vwa^aBjHW  uSo'iti'  rifi  koto.  Xpunay  •^•XoiriHJtiiii.  Strum 
Vl.  p.  648. 

*  Jubuii,  16— 2H. 

82  The  Church  of  Alexafidrta.    [chap.  i. 

divinely  instructed  by  dreams^,  he  himself  at  length 
heard  the  voice  of  God  out  of  the  whirhvind,  in  recom- 
pense for  his  long  trial  and  his  faithfulness  under  it'. 
Why  should  not  the  book  of  Job  be  accepted  by  us, 
as  a  gracious  intimation  given  us,  who  are  God's  sons, 
for  our  comfort,  when  we  are  anxious  about  our 
brethren  who  are  still  "  scattered  abroad  "  in  an  evil 
world  ;  an  intimation  that  the  Sacrifice,  which  is  the 
hope  of  Christians,  has  its  power  and  its  success, 
wherever  men  seek  God  with  their  whole  heart? — If  it 
be  objected  that  Job  lived  in  a  less  corrupted  age  than 
the  times  of  ignorance  which  followed,  Scripture,  as  if 
for  our  full  satisfaction,  draws  back  the  curtain  farther 
still  in  the  history  of  Balaam.  There  a  bad  man  and 
a  heathen  is  made  the  oracle  of  true  divine  messages 
about  doing  justly,  and  loving  mercy,  and  \valking 
humbly  ;  nay,  even  among  the  altars  of  superstition, 
the  Spirit  of  God  vouchsafes  to  utter  prophecy^.  And 
so  in  the  cave  of  Endor,  even  a  saint  was^ent  from 
the  dead  to  join  the  company  of  an  apostate  king,  and 
of  the  sorceress  whose  aid  he  was  seeking  3  Accord- 
ingly, there  is  nothing  unreasonable  in  the  notion,  that 
there  may  have  been  heathen  poets  and  sages,  or 
sibyls  again,  in  a  certain  extent  divinely  illumina- 
ted, and 'organs  through  whom  religious  and  moral 
truth  was  conveyed  to  their  countrymen;  though  their 
knowledge  of  the  Power  from  whom  the  gift  came, 
nay,  and  their  perception  of  the  gift  as  existing  in 
themselves,  may  have  been  very  faint  or  defective 

*  Ibid.  iv.  13,  &c. 

'  Job  xxxviii.  i  ;  xlii.  10,  &c.      [Vide  also  Gen.  zli.  45.     Exod.  iii.  i. 
Jon.  i.  5 — 16.] 

*  Numb.  xxH. — xxiv.     Mic.  vi.  5—8. 

*  1  Sam.  xxviii.  14. 

This  doctrine,  thus  impetfuctly  sketched,  shall  now 
be  presented  to  the  reader  hi  the  words  of  St,  Clement. 
"  To  the  Word  of  God,"  he  says,  "  all  the  host  of 
angels  and  heavenly  powers  is  subject,  revealing,  as  He 
does.  His  holy  office  {economy),  for  Him  who  has  put 
all  things  under  Him.  Wherefore,  His  are  all  men  ; 
some  actually  knowing  Him,  others  not  as  yet :  some 
as  friends  "  (Christians),  "  others  as  faithful  servants  " 
C  J  en's),  "others  as  simply  ser\'ants  "  (heathen).  "  He  is 
the  Teacher,  who  instructs  the  enlightened  Christian 
by  mysteries,  and  the  faithful  labourer  by  cheerful 
hopes,  and  the  hard  of  heart  with  His  keen  corrective 
discipline ;  so  that  His  providence  is  particular, 
public,  and  universal.  .  He  it  is  who  gives  to  the 
Greeks  their  philosophy  by  His  ministering  Angels  ,  . 
for  He  is  the  Saviour  not  of  these  or  those,  but  of  all, 
■  •  His  precepts,  both  the  former  and  the  latter,  are 
•irawn  forth  from  one  fount ;  those  who  were  before 
the  Law,  not  suffered  to  be  without  law,  those  who  do 
not  hear  the  Jewish  philosophy,  not  surrendered  to  an 
""bridled  course.  Dispensing  in  former  times  to  some 
"is  precepts,  to  others  philosophy,  now  at  length,  by 
His  own  personal  coming,  He  has  closed  the  course 
°^  unbelief,  which  is  henceforth  inexcusable  ;  Greek 
and  barbarian  "  (that  is,  Jew)  "  being  led  forward  by  a 
separate  process  to  that  perfection  which  is  through 

I  f  this  doctrine  be  scriptural,  it  is  not  difficult  to 

"'^tcrmine  the  fine  of  conduct  which  is  to  be  observed 

"y   the  Christian  apologist  and  missionary.     Believing 

God's  hand  to  be  in  every  system,  so  far  forth  as  it  is 

[^*^*e  (though  Scripture  alone  is  the  depositary  of  His 

G  2 

84  TIu  Church  of  Alexandria,    [chap,  l 

unadulterated  and  complete  revelation),  he  will,  after 
St.  Paul's  manner,  seek  some  points  in  the  existing 
superstitions  as  the  basis  of  his  own  instructions, 
instead  of  indiscriminately  condemning  and  discard- 
ing the  whole  assemblage  of  heathen  opinions  and 
practices  ;  and  he  will  address  his  hearers,  not  as  men 
in  a  state  of  actual  perdition,  but  as  being  in  imminent 
danger  of  "  the  wrath  to  come,"  because  they  are  in 
bondage  and  ignorance,  and  probably  under  God's 
displeasure,  that  is,  the  vast  majority  of  them  are  so  in 
fact ;  but  not  necessarily  so,  from  the  very  circum- 
stance of  their  being  heathen.  And  while  he  stren- 
uously opposes  all  that  is  idolatrous,  immoral,  and 
profane,  in  their  creed,  he  will  profess  to  be  leading 
them  on  to  perfection,  and  to  be  recovering  and 
purifying,  rather  than  reversing  the  essential  principles 
of  their  belief. 

A  number  of  corollaries  may  be  drawn  from  this 
,view  of  the  relation  of  Christianity  to  Paganism,  by 
jway  of  solving  difficulties  which  often  perplex  the 
mind.  For  example,  we  thus  perceive  the  utter 
impropriety  of  ridicule  and  satire  as  a  means  of  pre- 
paring a  heathen  population  for  the  reception  of  the 
truth.  Of  course  it  is  right,  soberly  and  temperately, 
.to  expose  the  absurdities  of  idol-worship  ;  but  some- 
times it  is  maintained  that  a  writer,  such  as  the 
infamous  Lucian,  who  scoffs  at  an  established  religion 
altogether,  is  the  suitable  preparation  for  the  Christian 
preacher, — as  if  infidelity  were  a  middle  state  between 
superstition  and  truth.  This  view  derives  its  plausi- 
bility from  the  circumstance  that  in  drawing  out 
systems  in  writing,  to  erase  a  false  doctrine  is  the  first 
top  towards  inserting  the   true.      Accordingly,  the 


SECT.  iii.J    The  Church  of  Alexandria. 


mind  is  often  compared  to  a  tablet  or  paper  :  a  state 
of  it  is  contemplated  of  absolute  freedom  from  all 
prepossessions  and  likings  for  one  system  or  another. 
3s  a  first  step  towards  arriving  at  the  truth  ;  and  infi- 
delity represented  as  that  candid  and  dispassionate 
'^^me    of   mind,   which    is    the    desideratum.      For 
'''stance,  at  the  present  day,  men  are  to  be  found  of 
'"'gh  religious  profession,  who,  fo   the  surprise  and 
£"'^ef  of  sober  minds,  exult  in  the  overthrow  just  now 
■^^   religion  in  France,  as  if  an  unbeliever  were  in  a 
^*~^  <jre  hopeful  state  than  a  bigot,  for  advancement  in 
^^«!  spiritual   knowledge.     But   in   truth,   the   mind 
.     ^^ver  can  resemble  a  blank  paper,  in  its  freedom  from 
*~*ripressions  and  prejudices.     Infidelity  is  a  positive, 
'"*  -^^t  a  negative  state ;    it  is  a   state  of  profaneness. ' 
^^*ide,  and  selfishness;  and  he  who  believes  a  little, 
j^-^  ■^jt  encompasses  that  little  with  the  inventions  of  men. 
^^  undeniably  in  a  better  condition  than  he  who  blots 
^^-^^ut  from  his  mind  both  the  human   inventions,  and 
^^Xat  portion  of  truth  which  was  concealed  in  them. 

Again  :  it  is  plain  that  the  tenderness  of  dealinj,% 

"^Jvhich  it  is  our  duty  to  adopt  towards  a  heathen  un- 

■aeliever,  is  not  to  be  used  towards  an  apostate.     No 

■^^conomy  can  be  employed  towards  those  who   have 

"fceen  once  enlightened,  and  have  fallen  away.     I  wish 

to  speak  explicitly  on  this  subject,  because  there  is  a 

great  deal  of  that  spurious  charity  among  us  which 

would   cultivate   the   friendship   of  those  who,  in   a 

Christian  country,  speak  against  the  Church  or  its 

creeds.     Origen  and  others  were  not  imwilling  to  be  on 

a  footing  of  intercourse  with  the  heathen  philosophers 

Ln\  their  day,  in  order,  if  it  were  possible,  to  lead  them 
into  the  truth  ;  but  deliberate  heretics  and  apostates, 

86  The  Church  of  Alexandria,    [chap.  i. 

those  who  had  known  the  truth,  and  rejected  it,  were 
objects  of  their  abhorrence,  and  were  avoided  from 
the  truest  charity  to  them.  For  what  can  be  said  to 
those  who  ah-eady  know  all  we  have  to  say  ?  And 
how  can  we  show  our  fear  for  their  souls,  nay,  and  for 
our  ovkVi  steadfastness,  except  by  a  strong  action  ? 
Thus  Origen,  when  a  youth,  could  not  be  induced  to 
attend  the  prayers  of  a  heretic  of  Antioch  whom  his 
patroness  had  adopted,  from  a  loathing^,  as  he  says, 
of  heresy.  And  St  Austin  himself  tells  us,  that  while 
he  was  a  Manichee,  his  own  mother  would  not  eat 
at  the  same  table  with  him  in  her  house,  from  her 
strong  aversion  to  the  blasphemies  which  were  the 
characteristic  of  his  sect  6.  And  Scripture  fully  sanc- 
tions this  mode  of  acting,  by  the  severity  with  which 
such  unhappy  men  are  spoken  of,  on  the  different 
occasions  when  mention  is  made  of  them  7. 

Further  :  the  foregoing  remarks  may  serve  to  show 
us,  with  what  view  the  early  Church  cultivated  and 
employed  heathen  literature  in  its  missionary  labours; 
viz.  not  with  the  notion  that  the  cultivation,  which 
literature  gives,  was  any  substantial  improvement  of 
our  moral  nature,  but  as  thereby  opening  the  mind, 
and  rendering  it  susceptible  of  an  appeal ;  nor  as  if 
the  heathen  literature  itself  had  any  direct  connexion 
with  the  matter  of  Christianity,  but  because  it  contained 
in  it  the  scattered  fragments  of  those  original  traditions 
which  might  be  made  the  means  of  introducing  a 
student  to  the  Christian  system,  being  the  ore  in  which  , 
the  true  metal  was  found.  The  account  above  given 
of  the  conversion  of  Gregory  is  a  proof  of  this. 

•  jSScXvTTO/tcvo^.      Eus.  Hist.  vi.  2  [vii.  7,  Eulog.  ap.  Phot.  p.  861] 

*  Bingham,  Antiq.  xvi.  2,  $  11. 

7  Rom.  xvi.  17.     2  Thess.  iii.  14.     2  John  10,  11,  &c 

S8CT,  m]     Thf  Ckurck  of  Alexandria.  87 

The  only  danger  to  which  the  Alexandrian  doctrine 
«  exposed,  is  that  of  its  confusing  the  Scripture  Dis- 
pensations with  that  of  Natural  Religion,  as  if  tliey 
*ere  of  equal  authority ;  as  if  the  Gospel  had  not  a 
■^'aim  of  acceptance  on  the  conscience  of  all  who  heard 
".  nor  became  a  touchstone  of  their  moral  condition  ; 
^^<d  as  if  the  Bible,  as  the  Pagan  system,  were  but 
P'T'tially  true,  and  had  not  been  attested  by  the  dis- 
*■''* ruinating  evidence  of  miracles.     This  is  the  heresy 
P'    tiic  Neologians  in  this  day,  as  it  was  of  the  Eclectics 
"*      primitive  times ;   as  will  be  shown  in   the   next 
^'^^^tion.     The  foregoing  extract  from  Clement  shows 
'^  entire  freedom  from  so  grievous  an  error ;  but  in 
""^der  to  satisfy  any  suspicion  which  may  exist  of  his 
''^ing  language  which  may  have  led  to  a  more  decided 
^^rruption  after  his  day.  I   will  quote  a  passage  from 
^*Xe  sixth  book  of  his  Stromateis,  in  which  he  main- 
^-ins  the  supremacy  of  Revealed  Religion,  as  being  in 
*^ct   the  source  and  test  of  all   other  religions;  the 
Extreme  imperfection  of  the  latter;  the  derivation  of 
"Whatever  is  true  in  these  from  Revelation ;  the  secret 
presence  of  God  in  them,  by  that  Word  of  Life  which 
is  directly  and  bodily  revealed  in  Christianity;  and 
Ihe  corruption  and  yet  forced  imitation  of  the  trutli  by 
the  evil  spirit  in  such  of  them,  as  he  wishes  to  make 
pass  current  among  mankind. 

"Should  it  be  said  that  the  Greeks  discovered  philo- 
sophy by  human  wisdom,"  he  says,  "'I  reply,  that  I  find 
the  Scriptures  declare  alt  wisdom  to  be  a  divine  gift  : 
for  instance,  the  Psalmist  considers  wisdom  to  be  tiie 
greatest  of  gifts,  and  offers  this  petition,  '  I  am  thy 
servant,  make  me  wise."  And  does  not  David  ask  for 
illumination  in  its  diverse  functions,  wbea  he  says 

88  Tlie  Chtirch  of  Alexandria,    [chap,  i* 

*  Teach  me  goodness,  discipline,  and  knowledge,  for  I 
have  believed  Thy  precepts'?     Here  he  confesses  that 
the  Covenants  of  God  are  of  supreme  authority,  and 
vouchsafed  to  the  choice  portion  of  mankind.    Again, 
there  is  a  Psalm  which  says  of  God,  *  He  hath  not  acted 
thus  with  any  other  nation,  and  His  judgments  He  hath 
not  revealed  to  them ; '  where  the  words,  *  He  hath  not 
done  thus,'  imply  that  He  hath  indeed  done  somewhat, 
but  not  t/ms.     By  using  t/ms  he  contrasts  their  state 
with  our  superiority ;  else  the  Prophet  might  simply 
have  said,  *He  hath  not  acted  with  other  nations,' 
without  adding  t/ms.     The  prophetical  figure,  *The 
Lord  is  over  many  waters,*  refers  to  the  same  truth ; 
that  is,  a  Lord  not  only  of  the  different  covenants,  but 
also  of  the  various  methods  of  teaching,  which  lead  to 
righteousness,  whether  among  the  Gentiles  or  the  Jews. 
David  also  bears  his  testimony  to  this  truth,  when  he 
sdiys  in  the  Psalm,  *  Let  the  sinners  be  turned  into  hell, 
all  the  nations  which  forget  God ;  that  is,  they  forget 
whom   they   formerly  remembered,  they  put    aside 
Him  whom  they  knew  before  they  forgot.     It  seems 
then  there  was  some  dim  knowledge  of  God  even 
among  the  Gentiles. .  They  who  say  that  philosophy 
originates  with  the  devil,  would  do  well  to  consider 
what  Scripture  says  about  the  devil's  being  trans- 
formed  into   an  Angel  of  light.     For  what  will  he 
do  then }  it  is  plain  he  will  prophesy.     Now  if  he 
prophesies  as  an  Angel  of  light,  of  course  he  will  speak 
what  is  true.     If  he  shall  prophesy  angelic  and  en- 
lightened doctrine,  he  will  prophesy  what  is  profitable 
also ;  that  is,  at  tJie  time  when  he  is  thus  changed  in 
his  apparent  actions,  far  different  as  he  is  at  bottom  in 
his  real  apostasy.    For  how  would  he  deceive  except 

SECT,  m-l    The  Church  of  Alexandria. 

by  craftily  leading  on  the  inquirer  by  means  of  truth,  to 
^n  intimacy  with  himself,  and  so  at  length  seducing 
liim  into  error? . .  Therefore  philosophy  is  not  false, 
Chough  he  who  is  thief  and  liar  speaks  truth  by  a 
«hangc  in  his  manner  of  acting.  . .  The  philosophy  of 
"the  Greeks,  limited  and  particular  as  it  is,  contains  the 
rudiments  of  that  really  perfect  knowledge  which  is 
beyond  tliis  world,  which  is  engaged  in  intellectual 
objects,  and  upon  those  more  spiritual,  whicli  eye  hath 
not  seen,  nor  ear  heard,  nor  the  heart  of  man  conceived, 
before  they  were  made  clear  to  us  by  our  Great 
Teacher,  who  reveals  the  holy  of  holies,  and  still 
holier  truths  in  an  ascending  scale,  to  those  who  are 
aiuine  heirs  of  the  Lord's  adoptions." 

What  I  have  said  about  the  method  of  teaching 
adopted  by  the  Alexandrian,  and  more  or  less  by  the 
other  primitive  Churches,  amounts  to  this  ;  that  they 
on  principle  refrained  from  telling  unbelievers  all  they 
believed  themselves,  and  further,  that  they  endeavoured 
to  connect  their  own  doctrine  with  theirs,  whether 
Jewish  or  pagan,  adopting  their  sentiments  and  even 
their  language,  as  far  as  they  lawfully  could.  Some 
instances  of  this  have  been  given ;  more  will  follow,  in 
the  remarks  which  I  shall  now  make  upon  the 
influence  of  Platonism  on  their  theological  language. 
The  reasons,  which  induced  the  early  Fathers  to 
rail  themselves  of  the  language  of  Platonism,  were 
They  did  so,  partly  as  an  argumentum  ad 
minem;  as  if  the  Christian  were  not  professing  in 
e  doctrine  of  the  Trinity  a  more  mysterious  tenet, 


■•  *  ■  .  ^ 

w  t>  ■ 

90  TIu  Church  of  Alexaftdria.    [chap,  i ' 

than  that  v/hich  had  been  propounded  by  a- 
heathen  authority;  partly  to  conciliate  their  pbilo^. 
sophical  opponents;  partly  to  save  themselves.. ftc 
arduousness  of  inventing  terms,  where  the  Church  had 
not  yet  authoritatively  supplied  them  ;  and  partly ^th 
the  hope,  or  even  belief,  that  the  Platonic  school  had 
been  guided  in  portions  of  its  system  by  a  more  than 
human  wisdom,  of  which  Moses  was  the  unknown  but 
real  source.  As  far  as  these  reasons  depend  upon 
the  rule  of  the  Economy,  they  have  already  been  con- 
sidered ;  and  an  instance  of  their  operation  given  in 
the  exoteric  conduct  of  Athanasius  himself,  whose 
orthodoxy  no  one  questions.  But  the  last  reason 
given,  their  suspicion  of  the  divine  origin  of  the  Pla- 
tonic doctrine,  requires  some  explanation. 

It  is  unquestionable  that,  from  very  early  times, 
traditions  have  been  afloat  through  the  world,  at- 
taching the  notion  of  a  Trinity,  in  some  sense  or 
other,  to.  the  First  Cause.  Not  to  mention  the  traces 
of  this  doctrine  in  the  classical  and  the  Indian  mytho- 
logies, we  detect  it  in  the  Magian  hypothesis  of  a 
supreme  and  two  subordinate  antagonist  deities  in 
Plutarch's  Trinity  of  God,  matter,  and  the  evil  spirit, 
and  in  certain  heresies  in  the  first  age  of  the  Church, 
which,  to  the  Divine  Being  and  the  Demiurgus,  added 
a  third  original  principle,  sometimes  the  evil  spirit,  and 
sometimes  matter  9.  Plato  has  adopted  the  same  gen- 
eral notion  ;  and  with  no  closer  or  more  definite  ap- 
proach to  the  true  doctrine.  On  the  whole,  it  seems 
reasonable  to  infer,  that  the  heathen  world  possessed 
traditions  too  ancient  to  be  rejected,  and  too  sacred  to 

*  Cudworth,  Intell.  Syst.  i.  49  §  13,  i6.  Beausobre,  Hist,  de  Manicb. 
iv.  6,  §  8,  &c 

m.]     The  Chui'c/i  of  Alej:andria. 

oe    used  in  popular  theolt^y.      If  Plato's   doctrine 

oc'ars  a  greater  apparent  resemblance  to  the  revealed 

'^'Tath  than  that  of  others,  this  is  owing  merely  to  his 

'^^en-e  in  speaking  on  the  subject.     His  obscurity 

_^ '  l^jws  room  for  an  ingenious  fancy  to  impose  a  mean- 

"^^g  upon   him.     Whether  he  includes  in  his  Trinity 

.^*-^  notion  of  a  First  Cause,  its  active  energy,  and  the 

*^  ^uence  resulting  from  it ;    or  again,  the  divine  sub- 

^-■^ance  as   the  source   of  all   spiritual   beings   from 

f^^^  •^rnity,  the  divine  power  and  wisdom  as  exerted  in 

'  *Tie  in   the   formation  of  the  material   world,  and 

^"^irdly,  the  innumerable  derivative  spirits  by  whom 

_,*~*e  world   is    immediately   governed,    is    altogether 

^  ^Dubtfui.      Nay,  even  the  writers  who   revived    his 

^Tiilosophy  in  the  third   and   fourth  centuries   after 

whrist.  and  embellished  the  doctrine  with  additions 

^  %om  Scripture,  discover  a  like  extraordinary  variation 

tw  their  mode  of  expounding  it.     The  Maker  of  the 

'orld,  the  Demiurge,  considered  by  Plato  sometimes 

;  the  first,  sometimes  as  the  second  principle,  is  by 

Julian  placed  as  the  second,  by  Plotinus  as  the  third, 

and  by  Proclus  as  the  fourth,  that  is,  the  last  of  three 

subordinate  powers,  all  dependent  on  a  First,  or  the 

One  Supreme  Deity  '.      In  truth,  speculations,  vague 

and  unpractical  as  these,  made  no  impression  on  the 

minds  of  the  heathen  philcsopiiers.  perhaps  as  never 

being  considered  by  them  as  matters  of  fact,  but  as 

allegories  and  metaphysical  notions,  and  accordingly, 

caused  in  them  no  solicitude  or  diligence  to  maintain 

consistency  in  their  expression  of  them. 

But  very  different  was  the  influence  of  the  ancient 
theory  of  Plato,  however  originated,  when  it  came  in 

92  The  Church  of  Alexandria,    [chap.  i. 

contact  with  believers  in  the  inspired  records,  who  at 
once  discerned  in  it  that  mysterious  Doctrine,  brought 
out  as  if  into  bodily  shape  and  almost  practical  per- 
suasiveness, which  lay  hid  under  the  angelic  mani- 
festations of  the  Law  and  the  visions  of  the  Prophets. 
Difficult  as  it  is  to  determine  the  precise  place  in  the 
sacred  writings,  where  the  Divine  Logos  or  Word  was 
first  revealed,  and  how  far  He  is  intended  in  each 
particular  passage,  the  idea  of  Him  is  doubtless  seated 
very  deeply  in  their  teaching.  Appearing  first  as  if  a 
mere  created  minister  of  God's  will,  He  is  found  to  be 
invested  with  an  ever-brightening  glory,  till  at  length 
we  are  bid  fall  down  as  before  the  personal  Presence 
and  consubstantial  Representative  of  the  one  God. 
Those  then,  who  were  acquainted  with  the  Sacred 
Volume,  possessed  in  it  a  key,  more  or  less  exact 
according  to  their  degree  of  knowledge,  for  that 
aboriginal  tradition  which  the  heathen  ignorantly  but 
piously  venerated,  and  were  prompt  in  appropriating 
the  language  of  philosophers,  with  a  changed  meaning, 
to  the  rightful  service  of  that  spiritual  kingdom,  of 
which  a  divine  personal  mediation  was  the  great 
characteristic.  In  the  books  of  Wisdom  and  Ecclesi- 
asticus,  and  much  more,  in  the  writings  of  Philo,  the 
Logos  of  Plato,  which  had  denoted  the  divine  energy 
in  forming  the  world,  or  the  Demiurge,  and  the  pre- 
vious all-perfect  incommunicable  design  of  it,  or  the 
Only-begotten,  was  arrayed  in  the  attributes  of  per- 
sonality, made  the  instrument  of  creation,  and  the 
revealed  Image  of  the  incomprehensible  God.  Amid 
such  bold  and  impatient  anticipations  of  the  future,  it 
is  not  wonderful  that  the  Alexandrian  Jews  outstepped 
the  truth  which  they  hoped  to  appropriate ;    and  that 

intruding  into  things  not  seen  as  yet,  with  the  con(i- 
ifence  of  prophets  rather  than  of  disciples  of  Revela- 
tion,  they   eventually   obscured    the   doctrine  when 
disclosed,  which  we  may  well  believe  they  loved  in 
prospect  and  desired  to  honour.     This  remark  par- 
ticularly applies  to  Pliilo,   who   associating   it  with 
■fatonic    notions   as   well   as   words,   developed    its 
Mneaments   with  so  rude  and  hasty  a  hand,   as   to 
*^Parate  the  idea  of  the  Divine  Word  from  that  of  the 
■"Eternal  God  ;    and  so  perhaps  to  prepare  the  way  for 
■^  Han  ism  2. 

Elven  after  this  Alexandrino-Judaic  doctrine  had 
^^Cn  corrected  and  completed  by  the  inspired  Apostles 
^^     Paul  and  St.  John,  it  did  not  lose  its  hold  upon 
lr\o  Fathers  of  the  Christian  Church,  who  could  not 
^t  discern  in  the  old  Scriptures,  even  more  clearly 
**^  a.n  iheir  predecessors,  tliose  rudiments  of  the  perfect 
*'uth  which  God's  former  revelations  concealed  ;   and 
^^'Ho  in  consequence  called  others,  (as  it  were,)  to  gaze 
^Pon  these  both  as  a  prophetical  witness  in  confu- 
tation of  unbelief,  and  in  gratitude  to  Him  who  had 
"V'rought  so  marvellously  with   His  Church.     But  it 
followed  from  the  nature  of  the  case,  that,  while  they 
thus  traced  with  watchful  eyes,  under  the  veil  of  the 
biteral   text,  the  first  and  gathering  tokens  of  that 
Divine  Agent  who  in  fulness  of  time  became  their 
Itcdeeraer,  they  were  led  to  speak  of  Him  in  terms 

*  This  may  be  illualraled  bj  the  iheological  lang'uagc  of  the  Paradiss 
h,  as  far  as  the  veiy  worOs  go,  is  conformable  both  to  Scrip- 
re  and  the  writings  of  the  early  Fathers,  but  beeomes  otfeasive  as  bein^ 
weh  up«n  as  if  it  vreie  literal,  not  liguiativc.     Iiis  scripnira)  to  say  that 
'  Ac  Son  went  forth  from  the  Father  to  create  the  worlds  j  but  when  this  is 
(naile  the  basis  of  b  scene  or  pagtani,  it  borders  on  Arianism.     Milton 
bas  made  Allcgoiy,  oi  the  Economy,  rcnl.     Vide  infra,  ch.  ii.  <  t.  fin. 

94  The  Church  of  Alexandria.    [_chap.  i. 

short  of  that  full  confession  of  His  divine  greatness, 
which  the  Gospel  reveals,  and  which  they  themselves 
elsewhere  unequivocally  expressed,  especially  as  living 
in  times  before  the  history  of  heresy  had  taught  them 
the  necessity  of  caution  in  their  phraseology.  Thus, 
for  instance,  from  a  text  in  the  book  of  Proverbs  3, 
which  they  understood  to  refer  to  Christ,  Origen  and 
others  speak  of  Him  as  "  created  by  the  Lord  in  the 
beginning,  before  His  works  of  old ; "  meaning  no 
more  than  that  it  was  He,  the  true  Light  of  man,  who 
was  secretly  intended  by  the  Spirit,  and  mystically 
(though  incompletely)  described,  when  Solomon  spoke 
of  the  Divine  Wisdom  as  the  instrument  of  God's 
providence  and  moral  governance.  In  like  manner, 
when  Justin  speaks  of  the  Son  as  the  minister  of  God, 
it  is  with  direct  reference  to  those  numerous  passages 
of  the  Old  Testament,  in  which  a  ministering  angelic 
presence  is  more  or  less  characterized  by  the  titles  and 
attributes  of  Divine  Perfection^.  And,  in  the  use  of 
this  emblematical  diction  they  were  countenanced  (not 
to  mention  the  Apocalypse)  by  the  almost  sacred 
authority  of  the  platonizing  books  of  Wisdom  and 
Ecclesiasticus  ;  works  so  highly  revered  by  the  Alex- 
andrian Church  as  to  be  put  into  the  hands  of  Cate- 
chumens as  a  preparation  for  inspired  Scripture, 
contrary  to  the  discipline  observed  in  the  neighbouring 
Church  of  Jerusalem  5. 

The  following  are  additional  instances  of  Platonic 
language  in  the  early  Fathers ;  though  the  reader  will 
scarcely  perceive  at  first  sight  what  is  the  fault  in 

*  Prov.  viii.  22,  Kvptos  Scrwrcv.    Septuag. 

*  Justin.  Apol.  i.  63.    Tiyph.  56,  &c. 

*  Bingh.  Amiq.  x.  i.  §  7. 

SECT,  ni.]     The  Ckurchvf  Alexandria.  95 

them,  unless  he  happens  to  know  the  defective  or 
perverse  sense  in  which  philosophy  or  heresy  used 
them^.  For  instance,  Justin  speaks  of  the  Word  as 
"fulfilHng  the  Father's  will."  Clement  calls  Him^ 
"  the  Thought  or  Reflection  of  God  ;"  and  in  another 
place,  "  the  Second  Principle  of  all  things,"  the  Father 
Himself  being  the  First.  Elsewhere  he  speaks  of  the 
Son  as  an  "  all-perfect,  all-holy,  all-sovereign,  all- 
authoritative,  supreme,  and  all -searching  nature,  reach- 
ing close  upon  the  sole  Almighty."  In  like  manner 
Origen  speaks  of  the  Son  as  being  "the  immediate 
Creator,  and  as  it  were,  Artificer  of  the  world  ; "  and 
the  Father,  "  the  Origin  of  it,  as  having  committed  to 
His  Son  its  creation."  A  bolder  theology  than  this  of 
Origen  and  Clement  is  adopted  by  five  early  writers 
connected  with  very  various  schools  of  Christian 
teaching ;  none  of  whom,  however,  are  of  especial 
authority  in  the  Church^.  They  explained  the  Scrip- 
ture doctrine  of  the  generation  of  the  Word  to  mean, 
His  manifestation  at  the  beginning  of  the  world  as 
distinct  from  God  ;  a  statement,  which,  by  weakening 
the  force  of  a  dogmatic  formula  which  implies  our 
Lord's  Divine  Nature,  might  perhaps  lend  some  acci- 
dental countenance  after  their  day  to  the  Arian  denial 
of  it.  These  subjects  will  come  before  us  in  the  next 

I  have  now,  perhaps,  sufficiently  accounted  for  the 
apparent  liberality  of  the  Alexandrian  School ;  which, 

*  Pelav.  Thcol,  Dogm.  lom.  ii.  i. .',  4. 

•  Tlieophilus  of  AnCioch  (a.d.  168);  Taiian,  pupil  of  Juslin  Martyr 
(•.u.  169);  AchcnagiiraaoF  Alexandria  (*.ii.  177};  Hippolytus,  ihcdUcipIs 

96  The  Church  of  Alexandria,    [chap,  i, 

notwithstanding,  was  strict  and  uncompromising,  when 
its  system  is  fairly  viewed  as  a  whole,  and  with  re- 
ference to  its  objects,  and  as  distinct  from  that  rival 
and  imitative  philosophy,  to  be  mentioned  in  the  next 
section,  which  rose  out  of  it  at  the  beginning  of  the 
third  century,  and  with  which  it  is  by  some  writers 
improperly  confounded.  That  its  principles  were  * 
always  accurately  laid,  or  the  conduct  of  its  masters 
nicely  adjusted  to  them,  need  not  be  contended  ;  or 
that  they  opposed  themselves  with  an  exact  impar- 
tiality to  every  form  of  error  which  assailed  the 
Church  ;  or  that  they  duly  entered  into  and  soundly 
applied  the  Jewish  Scriptures  ;  or  that  in  conducting 
the  Economy  they  were  altogether  free  from  an 
ambitious  imitation  of  the  Apostles,  nobly  conceived 
indeed,  but  little  becoming  uninspired  teachers.  It 
may  unreluctantly  be  confessed,  wherever  it  can  be 
proved,  that  their  exoteric  professions  at  times  affected 
the  purity  of  their  esoteric  doctrine,  though  this  re- 
mark scarcely  applies  to  their  statements  on  the  sub- 
ject of  the  Trinity  ;  and  that  they  indulged  a  boldness 
of  inquiry,  such  as  innocence  prompts,  rashness  and 
irreverence  corrupt,  and  experience  of  its  mischievous 
consequences  is  alone  able  to  repress.  Still  all  this, 
and  much  more  than  this,  were  it  to  be  found,  weighs 
as  nothing  against  the  mass  of  testimonies  producible 
from  extant  documents  in  favour  of  the  real  orthodoxy 
of  their  creed.  Against  a  multitude  of  the  very 
strongest  and  most  explicit  declarations  of  the  divinity 
of  Christ,  some  of  which  will  be  cited  in  their  proper 

of  Ircnseus  and  friend  of  Origen  (a.d.  222) :  and  the  Author  who  goes 
under  the  name  of  Novatian  (a.  d.  250).  [This  is  Bull's  view;  for  that 
maturely  adopted  by  the  author,  vide  his  "Theological  Tracts.**] 

SECT.  III.]     The  Cluu-ch  of  Alexandna.  97 

place,  but  a  very  few   apparent   exceptions   to   the 
strictest    language    of    technical     theology    can    be 
gatliered   from   their    writings,   and    these    are    suf- 
ficiently explained  by  the  above  considerations.     And 
fut-t-iier,  such  is  the  high  religious  temper  which  their 
^'Orka  exhibit,  as  to  be  sufficient  of  itself  to  convince 
wk<i  Christian  inquirer,  that  they  would  have  shrunk 
'''•^in  the  deliberate  blasphemy  with  which  Arius  in 
"*^i  succeeding  century  assailed    and  scoffed  at  the 
**^^^  ful  majesty  of  his  Redeemer. 

^rigcn,  in  particular,  that  man  of  strong  heart,  who 
"■^>-s  paid  for  the  unbridled  freedom  of  his  spcculatior  i 
***~»  other  subjects  of  theologj',  by  the  multitude  of 
^■"ievous  and  unfair  charges  which  burden  his  name 
*'" » th  posterity,  protests,  by  the  forcible  argument  of 
*  Xife  devoted  to  God's  scr\'ice,  against  his  alleged  con- 
^■^^xion  with  the  cold  disputatious  spirit,  and  the 
^  *^principled  domineering  ambition,  which  are  the 
^^  *■  storical  badges  of  the  heretical  party.  Nay,  it  is  a 
^^^^markable  fact  that  it  was  he  wiio  discerned  the 
^^2resy9  outside  the  Church  on  its  first  rise,  and 
^■^tually  gave  the  alarm,  sixty  years  before  Arius's  day. 

I  •  "  The  Word,"  says  Origcn,  "  being  the  Image  of  the  InvL'iiblc  GoH, 

1  ^^uat  Himself  be  invisible  Nay,  I  will  mainlain  further,  ihat  as  being 
I  ^^e  Ima^  He  is  eternal,  asihe  God  whose  Image  He  is.  For  wlien  was 
1  *lla[  GoJ.  whom  Si.  John  calls  ihe  Light,  destitute  of  tlie  Radiance  of  Wy. 
I  *ti(ommunicablc  glory,  so  that  a  man  may  dare  to  aaeribc  a  bcgirmingof 
I  dtjslcncc  to  ihe  Son  ?  .  . .  Ij!t  a  man,  who  dares  to  aay  that  [he  Son  is  not 
H  (ram  nciniij,  coiisiilcr  well,  Ihat  (his  is  all  one  with  saying,  Uivine  Wis> 
I  dam  had  a  beginninjj,  or  Benson,  or  Lif;."'  Athan.  dc  U.-cr,  Nic.  (  J?- 
H  Vide  also  his  «■«))!  u(ij(iuv  (if  RufRnus  may  lie  trusted),  for  his  ricnnuncr- 
H  mcnt  (if  ll*  Mill  mare  charnctfiistic  Arianisms  of  (he  ^t'  '""*  ou"  'V  ^nd 
^^  Ibc  j£  ovN  VvTtav,  [On  Origen's  disailvii illumes,  vide  Lumper  liisE.  l.  i. 
^^       p.  496,  Ac.] 

98  Tlie  Church  of  Alexandria,    [chap.  i. 

Here  let  it  suffice  to  set  down  in  his  vindication  the 
following  facts,  which  may  be  left  to  the  consideration 
of  the  reader  ; — first,  that  his  habitual  hatred  of  heresy 
and  concern  for  heretics  were  such,  as  to  lead  him, 
even  when  left  an  orphan  in  a  stranger's  house,  to 
withdraw  from  the  praying  and  teaching  of  one  of 
them,  celebrated  for  his  eloquence,  who  was  in  favour 
with  his  patroness  and  other  Christians  of  Alexandria ; 
that  all  through  his  long  life  he  was  known  through- 
out Christendom  as  the  especial  opponent  of  false 
doctrine,  in  its  various  shapes ;  and  that  his  pupils, 
Gregory,  Athenodorus,  and  Dionysius,  were  principal 
actors  in  the  arraignment  of  Paulus,  the  historical 
forerunner  of  Arius ; — next,  that  his  speculations, 
extravagant  as  they  often  were,  related  to  points  not 
yet  determined  by  the  Church,  and,  consequently,  were 
really,  what  he  frequently  professed  them  to  be, 
inquiries ; — ^further,  that  these  speculations  were  for  the 
most  part  ventured  in  matters  of  inferior  importance, 
certainly  not  upon  the  sacred  doctrines  which  Arius 
afterwards  impugned,  and  in  regard  to  which  even  his 
enemy  Jerome  allows  him  to  be  orthodox  ; — ^that  the 
opinions  which  brought  him  into  disrepute  in  his  life- 
time concerned  the  creation  of  the  world,  the  nature 
of  the  human  soul,  and  the  like ; — that  his  opinions, 
or  rather  speculations,  on  these  subjects,  were  im- 
prudently made  public  by  his  friends  ; — that  his 
writings  were  incorrectly  transcribed  even  in  his  life- 
time, according  to  his  own  testimony ; — ^that  after  his 
death,  Arian  interpolations  appear  to  have  been  made 
in  some  of  his  works  now  lost,  upon  which  the  sub- 
"■^uent  Catholic  testimony  of  his  heterodoxy  is 
nmded; — that,  on  the  other  hand,  in  his   extant 

.  m.J    The  Church  of  Alexandria.  99 

cs,  the  doctrine  of  the  Trinity  is  clearly  avowed, 

=ind  in  particular,  our  Lord's    Divinity  energetically 

^nd  variously  enforced  ; — and  lastly,  that  in  matter 

«)f  fact,  the  Arian  party  does  not  seem  to  have  claimed 

Aim,  or  appealed  to  him  in   self-defence,  till  thirty 

3'ears   after  the   first   rise   of  the   heresy,  when   the 

originators  of  it   were   already  dead,  although   they 

lad  showed  their  inclination   to  shelter   themselves 

behind  celebrated  names,  by  the  stress  they  laid  on 

their  connexion  with  the  martyr  Lucian'.     But  if  so 

much  can  be  adduced  in  exculpation  of  Origen  from 

any  grave  charge  of  heterodoxy,  what  accusation  can 

be  successfully  maintained  against  his  less  suspected 

fellow-labourers  in  the  polemical  school  ?  so  that,  in 

concluding  this  part  of  the  subject,  we  may  with  full 

satisfaction  adopt  the  judgment  of  Jerome  : — "  It  may 

^be  that  they  erred  in  simplicity,  or  that  they  wrote  in 
another  sense,  or  that  their  writings  were  gradually 
corrupted  by  unskilful  transcribers  ;  or  certamly, 
before  Arius,  like  '  the  sickness  that  destroycth  in  the 
noon-day,'  was  born  in  Alexandria,  they  made  state- 
ments innocently  and  incautiously,  which  are  open  to 
the  misinterpretation  of  the  perverse^." 

'  Hum.  Ori^cn.  lib.  i.  lib.ii.  4.  §  i.  Bull,  Dcfcns.  V.  K.  iL  ^. 
Waialanil's  Waiks,  vol.  iii.  p.  31Z.  Baliua,  D^fcn^  des  Ss.  Piles,  ii.  10 
Tillcmont,  Mem.  vol.  iii.  p.  159.  Soctal.  Hisc.  iv.  t6.  Aihanasiua 
Mlices  the  chaage  in  Ibc  Arlan  palcm^cs,  Ftoni  mere  djspuiatjan  10  an 
appeal  (o  auihorily,  in  his  De  Sent.  Dionys.  \  t,  wiilten  about  jl.d.  3J4. 
oSSli'  OUT*  euAoyoc  ovrt  jrpos  diroStifti'  tit  r^s  Sd'as  ypai^s  pi/riV 
i>(ilvinfi  Tqs  Qipto-tiuS  atriv,  dtl  yXv  ■K\ui^ai3ii,%  uxaiuxi^o'^i 
btopiJ^aVTo  «oc  (TOc^iVfiara  jriflttui-  vCc  Sc  koI  diajSiiXXtii'  w 
TciTtpas  TeroX^ifKaiTi.  , 

'  Apolug.  adv.  KufiiiL  ii.  Opec.  vul,  ii.  p.  :4g. 

II   2 





The  words  of  St.  Jerome,  with  which  the  last  section 
closed,  may  perhaps  suggest  the  suspicion,  that  the 
Alexandrians,  though  orthodox  themselves,  yet  in- 
cautiously prepared  the  way  for  Arianism  by  the 
countenance  they  gave  to  the  use  of  the  Platonic 
theological  language.  But,  before  speculating  on  the 
medium  of  connexion  between  Platonism  and  Arian- 
ism, it  would  be  well  to  ascertain  the  existence  of  the 
connexion  itself,  which  is  very  doubtful,  whether  we 
look  for  it  in  history,  or  in  the  respective  characters 
of  the  parties  professing  the  two  doctrines ;  though  it 
is  certain  that  Platonism,  and  Origenism  also,  became 
the  excuse  and  refuge  of  the  heresy  when  it  was  con- 
demned by  the  Church.  I  proceed  to  give  an  account 
of  the  rise  and  genius  of  Eclecticism,  with  the  view  of 
throwing  light  upon  this  question  ;  that  is,  of  showing 
its  relation  both  to  the  Alexandrian  Church  and  to 


The  Eclectic  philosophy  is  so  called  from  its  pro- 
fessing  to  select   the   better   parts    of    the   systems 

SSCT.  IV.]  The  Eclectic  Sect. 

'"Vented  before  it,  and  to  digest  these  into  one  con- 
sistent doctrine.     It  is  doubtful  where  the  principle  of 
'   °''iginated,  but  it  is  probably  to  be  ascribed  to  the 
■'^''^xandrian  Jews.     Certain  it  is,  that  the  true  faith 
"cyer    could   come   into   contact   with    the    heathen 
pft'losophics,  without  exereising  its  right  to  arbitrate 
°^t\veen  them,   to    protest   against   their   vicious   or 
^'"'"^neous  dogmas,  and  to  extend  its  countenance  to 
wnatevcr  bore  an  exalted  or  a   practical   character. 
Cultivated  taste  would  be  likely  to  produce  among 
^  heathen  the  same  critical  spirit  which  was  created 
^      real  religious  knowledge  ;    and  accordingly   we 
^^3  in  the  philosophers  of  the  Augustan  and  the  suc- 
^ding  age,  an  approximation  to  an  eclectic  or  syn- 
^tistic  system,  similar  to  that  which  is  found  in  tlie 
filings  of  Philo.     Some  authors  have  even  supposed, 
Mat  Potamo,  the  original  projector  of  the  school  based 
^»i  this  principle,  flourished  in  the  reign  of  Augustus  ; 
*-*ut  tliis  notion  is  untenable,  and  we  must  refer  him  to 
*^Iie  age  of  Severus,  at  the  end  of  the  second  century'. 
In  the  mean  time,  the  Christians  had  continued  to  act 
Upon  the  discriminative  view  of  heathen  philosophy 
"which  the  Philonists  had  opened  ;  and,  as  we  have 
already  seen,  Clement,  yet  without  allusion  to  partic- 
ular sect  or  theory,  which  did  not  exist  till  after  his 
day,  declares  himself  the  patron  of  the  Eclectic  prin- 
ciple.    Thus  we  are  introduced  to  the  history  of  the 
School  which  embodied  it. 

Ammonius,    the    contemporary    of    Potamo,   and 
virtually  the  founder  of  the  Eclectic  sect,  was  bom  of 

pan  I.  1,  i  4.      [ViJc  fabric.  Bibl.  Gnrc. 


I02  The  Eclectic  Sect.  [chap.  i. 

Christian  parents,  and  educated  as  a  Christian  in  Ihtf* 
catechetical  institutions  of  Alexandria,  under  thf- 
superintendence  of  Clement  or  Pantaenus.  After  a 
time  he  renounced,  at  least  secretly,  his  belief  in 
Christianity ;  and  opening  a  school  of  morals  and 
theology  on  the  stock  of  principles,  esoteric  and 
exoteric,  which  he  had  learned  in  the  Church,  he 
became  the  founder  of  a  system  really  his  own,  but 
which  by  a  dexterous  artifice  he  attributed  to  Plato. 
The  philosophy  thus  introduced  into  the  world  was 
forthwith  patronized  by  the  imperial  court,  both  at 
Rome  and  in  the  East,  and  spread  itself  in  the  course 
of  years  throughout  the  empire,  with  bitter  hostility 
and  serious  detriment  to  the  interests  of  true  religion ; 
till  at  length,  obtaining  in  the  person  of  Julian  a 
second  apostate  for  its  advocate,  it  became  the  author- 
ized interpretation  and  apology  for  the  state  poly- 
theism. It  is  a  controverted  point  whether  or  not 
Ammonius  actually  separated  from  the  Church.  His 
disciples  affirm  it;  Eusebius,  though  not  without  some 
immaterial  confusion  of  statement,  denies  it 2.  On 
the  whole,  it  is  probable  that  he  began  his  teaching 
as  a  Christian,  and  but  gradually  disclosed  the 
systematic  infidelity  on  which  it  was  grounded.  We 
are  told  expressly  that  he  bound  his  disciples  to 
secrecy,  which  was  not  broken  till  they  in  turn  became 
lecturers  in  Rome,  and  were  led  one  by  one  to  divulge 
the  real  doctrines  of  their  master^  ;  nor  can  we  other- 
wise account  for  the  fact  of  Origen  having  attended 
him  for  a  time,  since  he  who  refused  to  hear  Paulus  of 
Antioch,  even  when  dependent  on  the  patroness  of 

*  Euseb.  Hist.  Eccl.  vi.  19.  '  Brucker,  ibid. 

The  Eeicclic  Scci. 


"■at  heretic,  would  scarcely  have  extended  a  voluntary 
'Countenance  to  a  professed  deserter  from  the  Chris- 
''an  faith  and  name. 

This  conclusion  is  confirmed  by  a  consideration  of 
'^e  nature  of  the  error  substituted  by  Ammonius  for 
'^'le  orthodox  belief;  which  was  in  substance  what  in 
"lese  times  would  be  called  Neologism,  a  heresy  which, 
^^^n  more  than  others,  has  shown  itself  desirous  and 
*ble  to  conceal  itself  under  the  garb  of  sound  religion, 
^'^^  to  keep  the  form,  while  it  destroys  the  spirit,  of 
^'*t-istianity,  So  close,  indeed,  was  the  outward  re- 
®^«Vib!aiice  between  Eclecticism  and  the  Divine  system 
***  whicli  it  was  the  deadly  enemy,  that  St.  Austin 
''^>>iarks,  in  more  than  one  passage,  that  the  difference 
^^twcen  the  two  professions  lay  only  in  the  varied 
^*^ceptation  of  a  few  words  and  propositions'*.  This 
Peculiar  character  of  the  Eclectic  philosophy  must  be 
*^arcfully  noticed,  for  it  exculpates  the  Catholic 
fathers  from  being  really  implicated  in  prc>cecdings, 
of  which  at  first  they  did  not  discern  the  drift ;  while 
explains  that  apparent  connexion  which,  at  the 
Ibtance  of  centuries,  exists  between  them  and  the 
teal  originator  of  it. 

The  essential  mark  of  Neologism  is  the  denial  of 
the  exclusive  divine  mission  and  peculiar  inspiration 
of  the  Scripture  I'rophets  ;  accompanied  the  while 
with  a  profession  of  general  respect  for  them  as  bene- 
factors of  mankind,  as  really  instruments  in  God's 
hand,  and  as  in  some  sense  the  organs  of  His  revela- 
tions ;  nay,  in  a  fuller  measure  such,  than  other 
religious  and  moral  teachers.     In  its  most  specious 


I.  Plai-Eecl.  |l: 

I04  The  Eclectic  Sect.  [chAp.  i. 

form,  it  holds  whatever  is  good  and  true  in  the  various 
religions  in  the  world,  to  have  actually  come  from 
God  :  in  its  most  degraded,  it  accounts  them  all 
equally  to  be  the  result  of  mere  human  benevolence 
and  skill.  In  all  its  shapes,  it  differs  from  the  ortho- 
dox belief,  primarily,  in  denying  the  miracles  of 
Scripture  to  have  taken  place,  in  the  peculiar  way 
therein  represented,  as  distinctive  marks  of  God's 
presence  accrediting  the  teaching  of  those  who 
wrought  them  ;  next,  as  a  consequence,  in  denying 
this  teaching,  as  preserved  in  Scripture,  to  be  in  such 
sense  the  sole  record  of  religious  truth,  that  all  who 
hear  it  are  bound  to  profess  themselves  disciples  of 
it.  Its ,  apparent  connexion  with  Christianity  lies 
(as  St.  Austin  remarks)  in  the  ambiguous  use  of 
certain  terms,  such  as  divine^  revelation^  inspiration^ 
and  the  like  ;  which  may  with  equal  ease  be  made 
to  refer  either  to  ordinary  and  merely  providential, 
or  to  miraculous  appointments  in  the  counsels  of 
Almighty  Wisdom.  And  these  words  would  be  even 
more  ambiguous  than  at  the  present  day,  in  an  age, 
when  Christians  were  ready  to  grant,  that  the  heathen 
w^ere  in  some  sense  under  a  supernatural  Dispensation, 
as  was  explained  in  the  foregoing  section. 

The  rationalism  of  the  Eclectics,  though  equally 
opposed  with  the  modern  to  the  doctrine  of  the 
peculiar  divinity  of  the  Scripture  revelations,  was 
circumstantially  different  from  it.  The  Neologists  of 
the  present  day  deny  that  the  miracles  took  place  in 
the  manner  related  in  the  sacred  record  ;  the  Eclectics 
denied  their  cogency  as  an  evidence  of  the  extraor- 
dinary presence  of  God.  Instead  of  viewing  them  as 
events  of  very  rare   occurrence,   and   permitted   for 

SECT.  IV.]  The  Eclectic  Sect.  1 05 

important  objects  in  the  course  of  Gods  providence, 
they  considered  them  to  be  common  to  every  age  and 
country,   beyond    the    knowledge    rather    than    the 
power  of  ordinary  men,  attainable  by  submitting  to 
the  discipline   of   certain    mysterious   rules,  and  the 
immediate  work  of  beings  far  inferior  to  the  Supreme 
Governor  of  the  world.     It  followed  that,  a  display  of 
miraculous   agency   having    no   connexion   with    the 
truth  of  the  religious  system  which  it  accompanied,  at 
feast  not  more  than  any  gift  merely  human  was  con- 
nected with  it,  such  as  learning  or  talent,  the  inquirer 
^as   at  once  thrown  upon  the   examination   of  the 
doctrines  for  the  evidence  of  the  divinity  of  Chris- 
tianity ;  and  there  being  no  place  left  for  a  claim  on 
^'s  allegiance  to  it  as  a  whole,  and  for  what  is  strictly 
termed  faith,  he  admitted  or  rejected  as   he  chose, 
cori^ipared  and  combined  it  with  whatever  was  valuable 
els^^here,  and  was  at  liberty  to  propose  to  himself 
tha.t:  philosopher  for  a  presiding  authority,  whom  the 
Christians  did  but  condescend  to  praise  for  his  approx- 
tocLtion  towards  some  of  the  truths  which  Revelation 
b^d  unfolded.     The  chapel  of  Alexander  Severus  was 
a  fit  emblem  of  that  system,  which  placed  on  a  level 
Abraham,  Orpheus,  Pythagoras,  and  the  Sacred  Name 
by  which  Christians  are  called.     The  zeal,  the  bro- 
therly love,  the  beneficence,  and  the  wise  discipline  of 
the  Church,  are  applauded,  and  held  up  for  imitation 
m  the  letters  of  the  Emperor  Julian  ;  who  at  another 
\\vci^  calls  the  Almighty  Guardian  of  the  Israelites  a 
"great  God 5,"  while  in  common  with  his  sect  he  pro- 
fessed to  restore  the  Christian  doctrine  of  the  Trinity 

•  Gibbon,  Hist.  ch.  xxiii. 

io6  ^he  Eclectic  Sect.  (chap,  i, 

to  its  ancient  and  pure  Platonic  basis.  It  followed  as 
a  natural  consequence,  that  the  claims  of  religion 
being  no  longer  combined,  defined,  and  embodied  in  a 
personal  Mediator  between  God  and  man,  its  various 
precepts  were  dissipated  back  again  and  confused  in 
the  mass  of  human  knowledge,  as  before  Christ  came ; 
and  in  its  stead  a  mere  intellectual  literature  arose  in 
the  Eclectic  School,  and  usurped  the  theological  chair 
as  an  interpreter  of  sacred  duties,  and  the  instructor  of 
the  inquiring  mind.  "In  the  religion  which  he  (Julian) 
had  adopted,"  says  Gibbon,  "  piety  and  learning  were 
almost  synonymous  ;  and  a  crowd  of  poets,  of  rhetori- 
cians, and  of  philosophers,  hastened  to  the  Imperial 
Court,  to  occupy  the  vacant  places  of  the  bishops,  who 
had  seduced  the  credulity  of  Constantius^.V  Who 
does  not  recognize  in  this  old  philosophy  the  chief 
features  of  that  recent  school  of  liberalism  and  false 
illumination,  political  and  moral,  w^hich  is  now  Satan's 
instrument  in  deluding  the  nations,  but  which  is  worse 
and  more  earthly  than  it,  inasmuch  as  his  former 
artifice,  affecting  a  religious  ceremonial,  could  not  but 
leave  so  much  of  substantial  truth  mixed  in  the 
system  as  to  impress  its  disciples  with  somewhat  of  a 
lofty  and  serious  character,  utterly  foreign  to  the  cold, 
scoffing  spirit  of  modern  rationalism  ? 

The  freedom  of  the  Alexandrian  Christians  from 
the  Eclectic  error  was  shown  above,  when  I  was  ex- 
plaining the  principles  of  their  teaching  ;  a  passage  of 
Clement  being  cited,  which  clearly  distinguished 
between  the  ordinary  and  the  miraculous  appoint- 
ments of  Providence.     An  examination  of  the  dates 

•  Ibid. 



le  history  will  show  that  they  could  not  do  more 
.n  bear  this  indirect  testimony  against  it  by  anticipa- 
tion.   Clement  himself  was  prior  to  the  rise  of  Eclec- 
ticism ;  Origen,  prior  to  its  public  establishment  as  a 
sect.   Ammonius  opened  his  school  at  the  end  of  the 
second  century,  and  continued  to  preside  in  it  at  least 
till.VD.  243^  ;  during  which  period,  and  probably  for 
some  years  after  his  death,  the  real  character  of  his 
doctrines  was  carefully  hidden  from  the  world.     He 
committed  nothing  to  writing,  whether  of  his  exoteric 
or  esoteric  philosophy,  and  when   Origen,  who  was 
Karcely  his  junior,  attended  him   in  his  first  years, 
prab-ibly  had  not  yet  decidedly  settled  the  form  of 
his  system.     Plotinus,  the  firat  promulgator  and  chief 
luminary   of  Eclecticism,  began   his   public   lectures 
^D.  244 ;  and  for  some  time  held  himself  bound  by 
ihe  promise  of  secrecy  made  to  his  master.     Moreover, 
lie  selected  Rome  as  the  seat  of  his  labours,  and  there 
B  even   proof  that  Origen  and  he  never  met      In 
Alexandria,   on  tlie    contrary,   the    infant  philosophy 
languished  ;  no  teacher  of  note  succeeded  to  Ammo- 
nius ;   and  even  had  it  been  othenvise,  Origen  had 
left   the   city   for  ever,   ten   years   previous   to    that 
philosopher's  death.     It  is  clear,  then,  that  he  had  no 
means  of  detecting  the  secret  infidelit>-  of  the  Eclectics ; 
and  the  proof  of  this  is  still  stronger,  if,  as  Brucker 
calculates^,   Plotinus   did    not    divulge   his   master's 
secret  till  A.D.  255,  since  Origen  died  A.D.  253.     Yet, 
1  in  this  ignorance  of  the  purpose  of  the  Eclectics, 
1  Origen,  in  his  letter  to  Gregory  expressing 

'  Pabiic.  Bibliolh.  Grae,  Hailcs.  iv.  ig. 
*  Biucker,  ibid. 

io8  The  Eclectic  Sect.  [chap.  i. 

dissatisfaction  at  the  actual  effects  which  had  resulted 
to  the  Church  from  that  literature  in  which  he  himself 
was  so  eminently  accomplished.  "  For  my  part,"  he 
says  to  Gregory,  "  taught  by  experience,  I  will  own  to 
you,  that  rare  is  the  man,  who,  having  accepted  the 
precious  things  of  Egypt,  leaves  the  country,  and  uses 
them  in  decorating  the  worship  of  God.  Most  men 
who  descend  thither  are  brothers  of  Had  ad  (Jeroboam), 
inventing  heretical  theories  with  heathen  dexterity, 
and  establishing  (so  to  say)  calves  of  gold  in  Bethel, 
the  house  of  God 9."  So  much  concerning  Origen's 
ignorance  of  the  Eclectic  philosophy.  As  to  his 
pupils,  Gregory  and  Dionysius,  the  latter,  who  was 
Bishop  of  Alexandria,  died  A.D.  264  ;  Gregory,  on  the 
other  hand,  pronounced  his  panegyrical  oration  upon 
Origen,  in  which  his  own  attachment  to  heathen  liter- 
ature is  avowed,  as  early  as  A.D.  239  ;  and  besides,  he 
had  no  connexion  whatever  with  Alexandria,  having 
met  with  Origen  at  Caesarea'.  Moreover,  just  at  this 
time  there  were  heresies  actually  spreading  in  the 
Church  of  an  opposite  theological  character,  such  as 
Paulianism  ;  which  withdrew  their  attention  from  the 
prospect  or  actual  rise  of  a  Platonic  pseudo-theology ; 
as  will  hereafter  be  shown. 

Such,  then,  were  the  origin  and  principles  of  the 
Eclectic  sect.  It  was  an  excrescence  of  the  school  of 
Alexandria,  but  not  attributable  to  it,  except  as  other 
heresies  may  be  ascribed  to  other  Churches,  which  give 
them  birth  indeed, but  cast  them  out  and  condemn  them 
when  they  become  manifest.     It  went  out  from  the 

•  Orig.  Ep,  ad  Gregor.  §  1. 

*  Tillemont,  vol.  iv.  Chronolog. 

f  «CT.  TV.] ■  Tk£  Eclectic  Sect.  tog 

Christians,  but  it  was  not  of  them  : — whether  it  re- 
sembled the  Arians,  on  the  other  hand,  and  what  use 
its  tenets  were  to  them,  are  the  next  points  to  con- 

Tile  Arian  school  has  already  been  attributed  to 
Antioch  as  its  birth-place,  and  its  character  determined 
to  be  what  we  may  call  Aristotehco- Judaic.     Now,  at 
^'cry  first  sight,  there  are  striking  points  of  difference 
between  it  and  the  Eclectics.     On  its  Aristotehc  side, 
its  disputatious  temper  was  altogether  uncongenial  to 
llie  new  Platonists.     These  philosophers  were  com- 
monly distinguished   by   their   melancholy  terapera- 
ment,  which  disposed  them  to  mysticism,  and  often 
urged  them  to  eccentricities  bordering  on  insanity^. 
Far  from  cultivating  the  talents  requisite  for  success 
in  life,  they  placed  tiie  sublimer  virtues  in  an  abstrac- 
tion from  sense,  and  an  indifference  to  ordinary  duties. 
Tlipy  believed  that  an  intercourse  with  the   intelli- 
gences of  the  spiritual  world  could  only  be  effected  by 
divesting  themselves  of  their  humanity  ;  and  that  the 
acquisition  of  miraculous  gifts  would  compensate  for 
their  neglect  of  rules  necessary  for  the  well-being  of 
common  mortals.     In  pursuit  of  this  hidden  talent, 
Plotinus   meditated   a  journey  into   India,   after  the 
pattern  of  Apollonius;    while  bodily  privations   and 
magical  rites  were  methods  prescribed  in  their  philo- 
sophy for  rising  in  the  scale  of  being.     As  might  be 
expected   from  the  professors   of  such  a  creed,  the 
fidence  of  argumentation  was  disdained,  as  beneath  the 
d  of  those  who  were  walking  by  an  internal  vision 

ttszxfi  of  those  who  w 

no  The  Eclectic  Sect.  [chap.  i. 

of  the  truth,  not  by  the  calculations  of  a  tedious  and 
progressive  reason  ;  and  was  only  employed  in  conde- 
scending regard  for  such  as  were  unable  to  rise  to  their 
own  level.  When  lamblichus  was  foiled  in  argument 
by  a  dialectician,  he  observed  that  the  syllogisms  of 
his  sect  were  not  weapons  which  could  be  set  before 
the  many,  being  the  energy  of  those  inward  virtues 
which  are  the  peculiar  ornament  of  the  philosopher. 
Notions  such  as  these,  which  have  their  measure  of 
truth,  if  we  substitute  for  the  unreal  and  almost 
passive  illumination  of  the  mystics,  that  instinctive 
moral  perception  which  the  practice  of  virtue  ensures, 
found  no  sympathy  in  the  shrewd  secular  policy  and 
the  intriguing  spirit  of  the  Arians  ;  nor  again,  in  their 
sharp-witted  unimaginative  cleverness,  their  precise 
and  technical  disputations,  their  verbal  distinctions, 
and  their  eager  appeals  to  the  judgment  of  the  popu- 
lace, which  is  ever  destitute  of  refinement  and  delicacy, 
and  has  just  enough  acuteness  of  apprehension  to  be 
susceptible  of  sophistical  reasonings. 

On  the  other  hand,  viewing  the  school  of  Antioch 
on  its  judaical  side,  we  are  met  by  a  different  but  not 
less  remarkable  contrast  to  the  Eclectics.  These  phi- 
losophers had  followed  the  Alexandrians  in  adopting 
the  allegorical  rule  ;  both  from  its  evident  suitableness 
to  their  mystical  turn  of  mind,  and  as  a  means  of 
obliterating  the  scandals  and  reconciling  the  inconsis- 
tencies of  the  heathen  mythology.  Judaism,  on  the 
contrary,  being  carnal  in  its  views,  was  essentially 
literal  in  its  interpretations ;  and,  in  consequence, 
as  hostile  from  its  grossness,  as  the  Sophists  from 
their  dryness,  to  the  fanciful  fastidiousness  of  the 
Eclectics.     It  had  rejected  the  Messiah,  because  He 

SECT.  IV.] 

The  Eclectic  Sect. 

did  not  fulfil  its  hopes  of  a  temporal  conqueror  and 
king,  It  had  clung  to  its  obsolete  ritual,  as  not  dis- 
t^eming  in  it  the  anticipation  of  better  promises  and 
Commands,  then  fulfilled  in  the  Gospel.  In  the  Chris- 
tian  Church,  it  was  perpetuating  the  obstinacy  of  its 
*-*»ibclief  in  a  disparagement  of  Christ's  spiritual 
^-xjthority,  a  reliance  on  the  externals  of  religious 
"^■^^orship,  and  an  indulgence  in  worldly  and  sensual 
X^leasures.  Moreover,  it  had  adopted  in  its  most 
^^^dious  form  the  doctrine  of  the  Chiliasts  or  Millen- 
^*jians,  respecting  the  reign  of  the  saints  upon  earth,  a 
^3octrine  which  Origen,  and  afterwards  his  pupit 
_i)ionysius,  opposed  on  the  basis  of  an  allegorical 
interpretation  of  Scripture^.  And  in  this  controversy, 
Judaism  was  still  in  connexion,  more  or  less,  with  the 
^ool  of  Antioch;  which  is  celebrated  in  those  times, 
1  contrast  to  the  Alexandrian,  for  its  adherence  to 
£  theory  of  the  literal  sense*. 

It  may  be  added,  as  drawing  an  additional  distinc- 
tion between  the  Arians  and  the  Eclectics,  that  while 
the  latter  maintained  the  doctrine  of  Emanations,  and 
of  the  eternity  of  matter,  the  hypothesis  of  the  former 
required  or  implied  the  rejection  of  both  tenets  ;  so 
that  the  philosophy  did  not  even  furnish  the  argumen- 
tative foundation  of  the  heresy,  to  which  its  theology 
outwardly  bore  a  partial  resemblance. 

But  in  seasons  of  difficulty  men  look  about  on  all 
for  support ;    and   Eclecticism,  which  had   no 

Uosh.  deBebus  anu  Const.  Siec.  jii.  c.  3S. 
Cooybearr,  Bampi.  Lecl.  iy.    Oiig.  0|ip.  cri.  Bencdn 

1 1 2  The  Eclectic  Sect.  [chap. 

attractions  for  the  Sophists  of  Antioch  while  th^^^ 
speculations  were  unknown  to  the.  world  at  larg^^ 
became  a  seasonable  refuge  (as  we  learn  from  various  — 
authors 5),  in  the  hands  of  ingenious  disputants,  whe 
pressed  by  the  numbers  and  authority  of  the  defenderrs 
of  orthodoxy.  First,  there  was  an  agreement  between 
the  Schools  of  Ammonius  and  of  Paulus,  in  the  car- 
dinal point  of  an  inveterate  opposition  to  the  Catholic 
doctrine  of  our  Lord's  Divinity.  The  judaizers 
admitted  at  most  only  His  miraculous  conception. 
The  Eclectics,  honouring  Him  as  a  teacher  of  wisdom, 
still,  far  from  considering  Him  more  than  man,  were 
active  in  preparing  from  the  heathen  sages  rival 
specimens  of  holiness  and  power.  Next,  the  two 
parties  agreed  in  rejecting  from  their  theology  all 
mystery,  in  the  ecclesiastical  notion  of  the  word.  The 
Trinitarian  hypothesis  of  the  Eclectics  was  not  per- 
plexed by  any  portion  of  that  difficulty  of  statement 
which,  in  the  true  doctrine,  results  from  the  very 
incomprehensibility  of  its  subject.  They  declared 
their  belief  in  a  sublime  tenet,  which  Plato  had  first 
propounded  and  the  Christians  corrupted ;  but  their 
Three  Divine  Principles  were  in  no  sense  one,  and, 
while  essentially  distinct  from  each  other,  there  was  a 
successive  subordination  of  nature  in  the  second  and 
the  third 6.  In  such  speculations  the  judaizing  Sophist 
found  the  very  desideratum  which  he  in  vain  de- 
manded of  the  Church  ;  a  scripturally-worded  creed, 
without    its   accompanying  difficulty   of   conception. 

*  Vide  Biucker,  Hist.  Phil.  per.  ii.  part  ii.  i.  2.  §  8.     Palius,  Dv'fjnac 
des  Pfercs,  ii.  19. 

•  ap;(tKat  v7rocrTa<r€t9.      Cudworth,  Intel!.  Syst.  i.  4  §  36. 

SiKT.  tV. 

The  Eclectic  Sect. 

-Accordingly,  to  the  doctrine  thus  put  into  his  hands 
he  might  appeal  by  way  of  contrast,  as  fulfilling  his 
Just  demands ;  nay,  in  proportion  as  he  out-argued 
'"id  unsettled  the  faith  of  his  Catholic  opponent,  so 
did  he  open  a  way,  as  a  matter  of  necessity  and  with- 
out formal  effort,  for  the  perverted  creed  of  that 
philosophy  which  had  so  mischievously  anticipated 
'"e  labours  and  usurped  the  office  of  an  ecclesiastical 
^V  nod, 

-(\nd,  further,  it  must  be  observed,  that,  when  the 
.^*^phist  had  mastered  the  Eclectic  theology,  he  had 
""^    fact   a   most  powerful  weapon  to  mislead  or  to 
*>ibarra5s    his    Catholic   antagonist.     The    doctrine 
^^liich  Ammonius  professed  to  discover  in  the  Church, 
^»id  to  reclaim  from  the  Christians,  was  employed  by 
^lie  Arian  as  if  the  testimony  of  the  early  Fathers  to 
tfce  truth  of  the  heretical  view  which  he  was  main- 
taining.    What  was  but  incaution,  or  rather  unavoid- 
sxblc  liberty,  in  the  Ante-Nicene  theology,  was  insisted 
on  as  apostolic  truth.     Clement  and  Origcn,  already 
subjected  to  a  perverse  interpretation,  were  witnesses 
provided   by   the   Eclectics   by  anticipation   against 
orthodoxy.     This  express  appeal  to  the  Alexandrian 
writers,  seems,  in  matter  of  fact,  to  have  been  reserved 
for  a  late  period  of  the  controversy ;  but  from  the 
first  an  advantage  would  accrue  to   the  Arians,  by 
their  agreement    (as  far   as   it   went)   with   received 
language  in  the  early  Church.     Perplexity  and  doubt 
were  thus  necessarily  introduced  into  the  minds  of 
ihosc  who  only  heard  the  rumour  of  the  discussion, 
and  even  of  many  who  witnessed  it,  and  who,  but  for 
this  apparent  primitive  sanction,  would  liave  shrunk 
Crom  the  bold,  irreverent  inquiries  and  the  idle  Bubtlc< 

1 1 4  The  Eclectic  Sect.  [chap.  i. 

ties  which  are  the  tokens  of  the  genuine  Arian  temper. 
Nor  was  the  allegorical  principle  of  Eclecticism  in- 
compatible with  the  instruments  of  the  Sophist     This 
also  in  the  hands  of  a  dexterous  disputant,  particu- 
larly in  attack,  would  become  more  serviceable  to  the 
heretical  than  to  the  orthodox  cause.     For,  inasmuch 
as  the  Arian  controversialist  professed  to  be  asking 
for  reasons  why  he  should  believe  our  Lord's  divinity, 
an  answer  based  on  allegorisms  did  not  silence  him, 
while  at  the  same  time,  it  suggested  to  him  the  means 
of  thereby  evading  those  more  argumentative  proofs  of 
the   Catholic   doctrine,   which    are    built    upon    the 
explicit  and  literal  testimonies  of  Scripture.     It  was 
notoriously  the  artifice  of  Arius,  which  has  been  since 
more  boldly  adopted  by  modern  heretics,  to  explain 
away  its  clearest  declarations  by  a  forced  figurative 
exposition.     Here  that  peculiar  subtlety  in  the  use  of 
language,  in  which  his  school  excelled,  supported  and 
extended    the    application   of    the   allegorical   rule, 
recommended,  as  it  was,  to  the  unguarded  believer, 
and  forced  upon  the  more  wary,  by  its  previous  recep- 
tion on  the  part  of  the  most  illustrious  ornaments  and 
truest  champions  of  the  Apostolic  faith. 

But  after  all  there  is  no  sufficient  evidence  in  history 
that  the  Arians  did  make  this  use  of  Neo-Platonism7, 

7  There  seems  to  have  been  a  much  earlier  coalition  between  the  Platonic 
and  Ebionitish  doctrines,  if  the  works  attributed  to  the  Roman  Clement  may 
be  taken  in  evidence  of  it.  Mosheim  (de  Turb.  Eccl.  §  34)  says  both  the 
Recognitions  and  Clementines  are  infected  with  the  latter,  and  the  Clemen- 
tines with  }he  former  doctrine.  These  works  were  written  between 
A.D.  180  and  A.D.  t$o !  are  they  to  be  referred  to  the  school  of  Theodotus 
and  Artemon,  which  was  humanitarian  and  Roman,  expressly  claimed 
the  Bishops  of  Rome  as  countenancing  its  errors,  and  falsified  the  Scrip- 
tures at  least?     Plotinus  came  to  Rome  a.d.  244,  and  Philostratus  com* 

considered  as  a  party.     I  believe  they  did  not,  and 
"Oni  the  facts  of  the  history  should  conclude  Eusebius 
*''"Ca:sarea  alone  to  be  favourable  to  that  philosophy: 
^Ut  some  persons  may  attach  importance  to  the  cir- 
^•^wstance,  that  Syria  was  one  of  its  chief  seats  from 
Its  very  first  appearance.     The  virtuous  and  amiable 
■'Viexaiider  Severus  openly  professed  its  creed  in  his 
lyrian  court,  and  in  consequence  of  this  profession, 
[tended  his  favour  to  the  Jewish  nation.     Zenobia,  a 
'ess  in  religion,  succeeded  Alexander  in  her  taste 
■■for  heathen  literature,  and  attachment  to  the  syncre- 
(istic  philosophy,     Her  instructor  in  the  Greek  lan- 
guage, the  celebrated  Longinus,  had  been  the  pupil  of 
Ammonius,  and  was  the  early  master  of  Porphyry,  the 
most  bitter  opponent  of  Christianity  that  issued  from 
the  Eclectic  school.     Afterwards,  Amelius,  the  friend 
and  successor  of  Plotinus,  transferred  the  seat  of  the 
philosophy  from  Rome  to  Laodicea  in  Syria ;  which 
became  remarkable  for  the  number  and  fame  of  its 
Eclectics^.      In   the   next    centurj',    lamblicus    and 
Libanius,  the  friend  of  Julian,  both  belonged  to  the 
Syrian  branch  of  the  sect.     It  is  remarkable  that,  in 
I  time,  its  Alexandrian  branch  declined  in 
lutation  on  the  death  of  Ammonius  ;  probably,  in 
isequence  of  the  hostility  it   met  with   from   the 
lurch  which  had  the  misfortune  to  give  it  birth. 

bit  life  ofApollDiiiu 

ihere  as  ca 

for  the  Platonism  of 

the  laltcr  of 

from  Ihe  earlier. 

shcim.  Diss,  ip  Tuib. 

Ecel.  S  1 1. 





One  subject  more  must  be  discussed  in  illustration  of 
the  conduct  of  the  Alexandrian  school,  and  the  cir- 
cumstances under  which  the  Arian  heresy  rose  and 
extended  itself.  The  Sabellianism  which  preceded  it 
has  often  been  considered  the  occasion  of  it ; — ^viz.  by 
a  natural  reaction  from  one  error  into  its  opposite ;  to 
separate  the  Father  from  the  Son  with  the  Arians, 
being  the  contrary  heresy  to  that  of  confusing  them 
together  after  the  manner  of  the  Sabellians.  Here, 
however,  Sabellianism  shall  be  considered  neither  as 
the  proximate  nor  the  remote  cause,  or  even  occasion, 
of  Arianism  ;  but  first,  as  drawing  off  the  attention  of 
the  Church  from  the  prospective  evil  of  the  philo- 
sophical spirit;  next,  as  suggesting  such  reasonings, 
and  naturalizing  such  expressions  and  positions  in  the 
doctrinal  statements  of  the  orthodox,  as  seemed  to 
countenance  the  opposite  error;  lastly,  as  providing  a 
sort  of  justification  of  the  Arians,  when  they  first 
showed  themselves ; — that  is,  Sabellianism  is  here 
regarded  as  facilitating  rather  than  originating  the 
disturbances  occasioned  by  the  Arian  heresy. 


The  history  of  the  heresy  afterwards  called  Sabcllian 

SECT,  V  ]  Sabdlianism. 

isoliscure.  Its  peculiar  tenet  is  the  denial  of  the  dis- 
tinction of  Persons  in  the  Divine  Nature ;  or  the 
(doctrine  of  the  Monarchia,  as  it  is  called  by  an  assump- 
tion of  exclusive  orthodoxy,  like  that  which  has  led  to 
fie  term  "  Unitarianism  "  at  the  present  day'.  It 
^'33  first  maintained  as  a  characteristic  of  party  by  a 
school  established  (as  it  appears)  in  Proconsular  Asia, 
t'^wards  the  end  of  the  second  century.  This  school, 
''f  which  Noetus  was  the  most  noted  master,  is  sup- 
posed to  be  an  offshoot  of  the  Gnostics  ;  and  doubt- 
'*ss  it  is  historically  connected  with  branches  of  that 
numerous  family.  Irena;us  is  said  to  have  written 
against  it ;  which  either  proves  its  antiquity,  or  seems 
to  imply  its  originatioa  in  those  previous  Gnostic 
systems,  against  Which  his  extant  work  is  entirely 
directed*.  It  may  be  added,  that  Simon  Magus, 
the  founder  of  the  Gnostics,  certainly  held  a  doctrine 
resembling  that  advocated  by  the  Sabellians. 

At  the  end  of  the  second  century,  Praxeas,  a  pres- 
byter of  Ephesus,  passed  from  the  early  school  already 
mentioned  to  Rome.  Meeting  there  with  that  deter- 
mined resistance  which  honourably  distinguishes  the 
primitive  Roman  Church  in  its  dealings  with  heresy, 
he  retired  into  Africa,  and  there,  as  founding  no  sect, 
he  was  soon  forgotten.  However,  the  doubts  and 
speculations  which  he  had  published,  concerning  the 
great  doctrine  in  dispute,  remained  alive  in  that  part 
of  the  world,  though  latent^,  till  they  burst  into  a 

•  Burton,  Bampt.Lecl.  note  IC.1.  [The  word  Mowtpx""  was  adopted  in 
I'Pposilion  to  the  three  o^iQxox  vffooTiurtw  of  the  Eclectics  i  vide  lupra 
p.  tuj 

»  Dodwell  In  Ircn.  Diss.  vi.  i6. 

*  Tcftull,  in  Pran.  [It  is  not  CI^rt3in  Praxeas  was  delected  at  Rume.] 

1 1 8  Sabellianism.  [chap,  l. 

flame  about  the  middle  of  the  third  century,  at  the 
eventful  era  when  the  rudiments  of  Arianism  were 
laid  by  the  sophistical  school  at  Antioch. 

The  author  of  this  new  disturbance  was  Sabellius, 
from  whom  the  heresy  has  since  taken  its  name.  He 
was  a  bishop  or  presbyter  in  Pentapolis,  a  district  of 
Cyrenaica,  included  within  the  territory  afterwards 
called,  and  then  virtually  forming,  the  Alexandrian 
Patriarchate.  Other  bishops  in  his  neighbourhood 
adopting  his  sentiments,  his  doctrine  became  so 
popular  among  a  clergy  already  prepared  for  it,  or 
hitherto  unpractised  in  the  necessity  of  a  close 
adherence  to  the  authorized  formularies  of  faith,  that 
in  a  short  time  (to  use  the  words  of  Athanasius)  **  the 
Son  of  God  was  scarcely  preached  in  the  Churches." 
Dionysius  of  Alexandria,  as  primate,  gave  his  judg- 
ment in  writing;  but  being  misunderstood  by  some 
orthodox  but  over-zealous  brethren,  he  in  turn  was 
accused  by  them,  before  the  Roman  See,  of  advocating 
the  opposite  error,  afterwards  the  Arian ;  and  in  con- 
sequence, instead  of  checking  the  heresy,  found  himself 
involved  in  a  controversy  in  defence  of  his  own 
opinions^.  Nothing  more  is  known  concerning  the 
Sabellians  for  above  a  hundred  years ;  when  it  is 
inferred  from  the  fact  that  the  Council  of  Constanti- 
nople (A.D.  381)  rejected  their  baptism,  that  they 
formed  at  that  time  a  communion  distinct  from  the 
Catholic  Church. 

Another  school  of  heresy  also  denominated  Sabel- 
lian,  is  obscurely  discernible  even  earlier  than  the 
Ephesian,  among  the  Montanists  of  Phrygia.  The 
well-known  doctrine  of  these  fanatics,  when  adopted 

^  Vide  Athaiu  de  Sent.  Dionyj. 

SECT,  v.] 





by  minds  less  heated  than  its  original  propagators, 
evidently  tended  to  a  denial  of  the  Personality  of  the 
Holy  Spirit,  Montanus  himself  probably  was  never 
capable  of  soberly  reflecting  on  the  meaning  of  his 
own  words ;  but  even  in  his  lifetime,  ^schines,  one  of 
his  disciples,  saw  their  real  drift,  and  openly  main- 
tained the  unreserved  monarcliia  of  the  Divine 
Natures.  Hence  it  is  usual  for  ancient  writers  to 
class  the  Sabellians  and  Montanists  together,  as  if 
coinciding  in  their  doctrira'  views'^.  The  success  of 
.iEschines  in  extending  h;s  heresy  in  Asia  Minor  was 
considerable,  if  we  may  judge  from  the  condition  of 
that  country  at  a  later  period. — Gregory,  the  pupil  of 
Origcn,  appears  to  have  made  a  successful  stand  against 
in  Pontus.  Certainly  his  writings  were  employed 
]n  the  controversy  after  his  death,  and  that  with  such 

"cct,  as  completely  to  banish  it  from  that  country, 
an  attempt  was  made  to  revive  it  in  the  time 
of  Basil  (A-D,  375  ^). — In  the  patriarchate  of  Antioch 
we  first  hear  of  it  at  the  beginning  of  the  third  cen- 
tury, Origen  reclaiming  from  it  Berylius,  Bishop  of 
Bostra,  in  Arabia.  In  the  next  generation  the  martyr 
Lucian  is  said  to  have  been  a  vigorous  opponent  of  it; 

id  he  was  at  length  betrayed  to  his  heathen  perse- 
cutors by  a  Sabellian  presbyter  of  the  Church  of 
Antioch.  At  a  considerably  later  date  (a.d.  375)  we 
hear  of  it  in  Mesopotamia*. 

At  first  sight  it  may  seem  an  assumption  to  refer 
various  exhibitions  of  heterodoxy  in  Asia  Minor, 

I20  Sabellianism.  (chap.  i. 

and  the  East,  to  some  one  school  or  system,  merely 
on  the  ground  of  their  distinguishing  tenet  being  sub- 
stantially the  same.  And  certainly,  in  treating  an 
obscure  subject,  on  which  the  opinions  of  learned  men 
differ,  it  must  be  owned  that  conjecture  is  the  utmost 
that  I  am  able  to  offer.  The  following  statement  will 
at  once  supply  the  grounds  on  which  the  above 
arrangement  has  been  made,  and  explain  the  real 
nature  of  the  doctrine  itself  in  which  the  heresy  con- 
sisted 9. 

Let  it  be  considered  then,  whetlier  there  were  not 
two  kinds  of  Sabellianism;  the  one  taught  by  Praxeas, 
the  other  somewhat  resembling,  though  less  material 
than,  the  theology  of  the  Gnostics  : — ^the  latter  being 
a  modification  of  the  former,  arising  from  the  pressure 
of  the  controversy :  for  instance,  parallel  to  the  change 
which  is  said  to  have  taken  place  in  the  doctrine  of 
the  Ebionites,  and  in  that  of  the  followers  of  Paulus  of 
Samosata.  Those  who  denied  the  distinction  of 
Persons  in  the  Divine  Nature  were  met  by  the 
obvious  inquiry,  in  what  sense  they  believed  God 
to  be  united  to  the  human  nature  of  Christ  The 
more  orthodox,  but  the  more  assailable  answer  to 
this  question,  was  to  confess  that  God  was,  in  such 
sense,  one  Person  with  Christ,  as  (on  their  Monarchis- 
tic  principle)  to  be  in  no  sense  distinct  from  Him.  This 
was  the  more  orthodox  answer,  as  preserving  inviolate 
what  is  theologically  called  the  doctrine  of  the  hypos- 
tatic union, — ^the  only  safeguard  against  a  gradual 
declension  into  the  Ebionite,  or  modem  Socinian 
heresy.  But  at  the  same  time  such  an  answer  was 
repugnant  to  the  plainest  suggestions  of  scripturally- 

»  [Vid.  AthaD.  Transl.  vol.  il.  p.  377. 

SECT.  T.] 



enlightened  reason,  wbicli  leads  us  to  be  sure  that, 
according  to  the  obvious  meaning  of  the  inspired  text, 
there  is  some  real  sense  in  which  the  Father  is  not  the 
Son  ;  that  the  Sender  and  the  Sent  cannot  be  in  all  re- 
spects the  same;  nor  can  the  Son  be  said  to  make  Him- 
self inferior  to  the  Father,  and  condescend  to  become 
man,— to  come  from  God,  and  then  again  to  return  to 
Him, — if,  after  all,  tliere  is  no  distinction  beyond  that 
of  words,  between  those  Blessed  and  Adorable  Agents 
in  the  scheme  of  our  redemption.  Besides,  without 
venturing  to  intrude  into  things  not  as  yet  seen,  it 
appeared  evident  to  the  primitive  Church,  that,  in 
matter  of  fact,  the  Son  of  God,  though  equal  in 
dignity  of  nature  to  the  Father,  and  One  with  Him  in 
essence,  was  described  in  Scripture  as  undertaking 
such  offices  of  ministration  and  subjection,  as  are 
never  ascribed,  and  therefore  may  not  without  blas- 
phemy be  ascribed,  to  the  self-existent  Father.  Ac- 
cordingly, the  name  of  Patripassian  was  affixed  to 
Praxeas,  Noctus,  and  their  followers,  in  memorial  of 
the  unscriptura!  tenet  which  was  immediately  involved 
in  their  denial  of  tlie  distinction  of  Persons  in  the 

Such  doubtless  was  the  doctrine  of  Sabellius,  if 
r*^ard  be  paid  to  the  express  declarations  of  the 
Fathers.  The  discriminating  Athanasius  plainly  af- 
firms it,  in  his  defence  of  Dionysius'.  The  Semi-Arian 
Creed  called  the  Macrostich,  published  at  Antioch, 
like  testimony^;    distinguishing, 

De  SenU  Dionja.  jj.  9,  *c.     [Oiai 
p.  695 1  "  Duds  dcRnimus,  ne  (ul  \ 
passus."    Tcrtull.  adv 
it  Synud.  {  16, 

i.  36.     Origen.  in  Ep.  ad.  Tit. 

,ra  pervtrsius  infen)  Paicripse 
-ax.  .3.] 

122  Sabellianism.  [chap.  i. 

between  the  Sabellian  doctrine,  and  the  doctrines  of 
the  Paulianists  and  Photinians,  to  which  some  mo- 
dem critics  have  compared  it.  Cyprian  and  Austin, 
living  in  Africa,  bear  express  witness  to  the  ex- 
istence of  the  Patripassian  sect  3  On  the  other 
hand,  it  cannot  be  denied,  that  authorities  exist 
favourable  to  a  view  of  the  doctrine  different  from  the 
above,  and  these  accordingly  may  lead  us,  in  agree- 
ment with  certain  theological  writers^,  without  inter- 
fering with  the  account  of  the  heresy  already  given,  to 
describe  a  modification  of  it  which  commonly  suc- 
ceeded to  its  primitive  form. 

The  following  apparently  inconsistent  testimonies, 
suggest  both  the  history  and  the  doctrine  of  this 
second  form  of  Sabellianism.  While  the  Montanists 
and  Sabellians  are  classed  together  by  some  authors, 
there  is  separate  evidence  of  the  connexion  of  each  of 
these  with  the  Gnostics.  Again,  Ambrosius,  the 
convert  and  friend  of  Origen  was  originally  a  Valen- 
tinian,  or  Marcionite,  or  Sabellian,  according  to 
different  writers.  Further,  the  doctrine  of  Sabellius 
is  compared  to  that  of  Valentinus  by  Alexander  of 
Alexandria,  and  (apparently)  by  a  Roman  Council 
(A.D.  324)  ;  and  by  St.  Austin  it  is  referred  indiffer- 
ently to  Praxeas,  or  to  Hermogenes,  a  Gnostic.  On 
the  other  hand,  one  Leucius  is  described  as  a  Gnostic 
and  MontanistS.  It  would  appear  then,  that  it  is  so 
repugnant  to  the  plain  word  of  Scripture,  and  to  the 

'  Cyprian.  Epist.  Ixxiii.    Tillemont,  Mem.  iv.  loo. 

^  Beausobre,  Hisu  de  Manich.  iii.  6.  §  7.  Mosheim,  de  Reb.  ant. 
Const,  saec.  ii.  §  68  ;  saec.  iii.  §  32.    Lardner,  Cred.  part  ii.  ch«  41. 

'  Vide  Tillemont,  vol.  ii.  p.  204  ;  iv.  p.  100,  &c  Waterland's 
Works,  vol.  i.  p.  236,  237* 

Sect,  v.]  Sabeltianism. 

most  elementary  notions  of  doctrine  thence  derived, 
to  suppose  that  Almighty  God  is  in  every  sense  one 
with  the  human  nature  of  Christ,  that  a  disputant, 
especially  an  innovator,  cannot  long  maintain  such  a 
position.  It  removes  the  mystery  of  the  Trinity, 
only  by  leaving  the  doctrine  of  the  Incarnation  in  a 
fomi  still  more  strange,  than  that  which  it  unavoidably 
presents  to  the  imagination.  Pressed,  accordingly,  by 
the  authority  of  Scripture,  the  Sabellian,  instead  of 
speaking  of  the  substantial  union  of  God  with  Christ, 
would  probably  begin  to  obscure  his  meaning  in  the 
decorum  of  a  figurative  language.  He  would  speak 
of  the  presence  rather  than  the  existence  of  God  in 
His  chosen  servant ;  and  this  presence,  if  allowed  to 
declaim,  he  would  represent  as  a  certain  power  or 
emanation  from  the  Centre  of  light  and  truth ;  if  forced 
by  his  opponent  into  a  definite  statement,  he  would 
own  to  be  but  an  inspiration,  the  same  in  kind,  though 
superior  in  degree,  with  that  which  enlightened  and 
guided  the  prophets.  This  is  that  second  form  of  the 
Sabellian  tenet,  which  some  learned  modems  have 
illustrated,  though  they  must  be  considered  to  err  in 
pronouncing  it  the  only  true  one.  That  it  should 
have  resulted  from  the  difficulties  of  the  Patripassian 
creed,  is  natural  and  almost  necessary ;  and  viewed 
merely  as  a  conjecture,  tlie  above  account  of  its  rise 
reconciles  the  discordant  testimonies  of  ecclesiastical 
lustor>'.  But  we  have  almost  certain  evidence  of  the 
matter  of  fact  in  TertuUian's  tract  against  Praxeas^, 
in  which  the  latter  is  apparently  represented  as  holding 
successively,  the  two  views  of  doctrine  which  have 
been  here  described.     Parallel  instances  meet  us  in 

^K  been  here 

,. }.  17. 

124  Sabellianisfn.  [chap,  i, 

the  history  of  the  Gnostics  and  Montanists.  Simon 
Magus,  for  instance,  seems  to  have  adopted  the  Patri- 
passian  theory.  But  the  Gnostic  family  which 
branched  from  him,  modified  it  by  means  of  their 
doctrine  of  emanations  or  aeons,  till  in  the  theology 
of  Valentinus,  as  in  that  of  Cerinthus  and  Ebion,  the 
incarnation  of  the  Word,  became  scarcely  more  than 
the  display  of  Divine  Power  with  a  figurative  person- 
ality in  the  life  and  actions  of  a  mere  man.  The 
Montanists,  in  like  manner,  from  a  virtual  assumption 
of  the  Divinity  of  their  founder,  were  led  on,  as  the 
only  way  of  extricating  themselves  from  one  blas- 
phemy, into  that  other  of  denying  the  Personality  of 
the  Holy  Spirit,  and  then  of  the  Word.  Whether  the 
school  of  Noetus  maintained  its  first  position,  we  have 
no  means  of  knowing  ;  but  the  change  to  the  second, 
or  semi-humanitarian,  may  be  detected  in  the  Sabel- 
lians,  as  in  Praxeas  before  them.  In  the  time  of 
Dionysius  of  Alexandria,  the  majority  was  Patri- 
passian  ;  but  in  the  time  of  Alexander  they  advocated 
the  Emanative,  as  it  may  be  called,  or  in-dwelling 
theory  7. 

What  there  is  further  to  be  said  on  this  subject 
shall  be  reserved  for  the  next  chapter.  Here,  how- 
ever, it  is  necessary  to  examine,  how,  under  these 
circumstances,  the  controversy  with  the  Sabellians 
would  affect  the  language  of  ecclesiastical  theology. 
It  will  be  readily  seen,  that  the  line  of  argument  by 
which  the  two  errors  above  specified  are  to  be  met,  is 
nearly  the  same  :    viz.  that   of  insisting  upon  the 

»  Theod.  Hist.  i.  4. 

SECT,  v.]  Sa&ellianism.  125 

personality  of  the  Word  as  distinct  from  the  Father. 
For  tlie  Patripassian  denied  that  the  Word  was  in  any 
real  respect  distinct  from  Him;  the  Emanatist,  if  he 
may  so  be  called,  denied  that  He  was  a  Person,  or 
.  more  than  an  extraordinary  manifestation  of  Divine 
l'$ower.  The  Catholics,  on  the  other  hand,  asserted 
His  distinct  personality;  and  necessarily  appealed,  in 
proof  of  this,  to  such  texts  as  speak  of  His  pre-existent 
relations  towards  the  Father  ;  in  other  words,  His 
ministrative  office  in  the  revealed  Economy  of  the 
Godhead.  And  thus,  being  obliged  from  the  course 
■  Jrf"  the  controversy,  to  dwell  on  this  truly  scriptural 
ienet,  and  happening  to  do  so  without  a  protest 
against  a  denial,  as  if  involved  in  it,  of  His  equality 
with  the  Father  in  the  One  Indivisible  Divine  Nature 
(a  protest,  which  nothing  but  the  actual  experience  of 
that  denial  among  them  could  render  necessary  or 
natural),  they  were  sometimes  forced  by  the  circum- 
stances of  the  case  into  an  apparent  anticipation  of 
the  heresy,  which  afterwards  arose  in  the  shape  of 

This  may  be  illustrated  in  the  history  of  the  two 
great  pupils  of  Origen,  who,  being  respectively 
opposed  to  the  two  varieties  of  Sabeliianism  above 
described,  the  Patripassian  and  the  Emanative, 
incurred  odium  in  a  later  age,  as  if  they  had  been 
forerunners  of  Arius  :  Gregoiy  of  NeocKsarea,  and 
Dionysius  of  Alexandria. 

The  controversy  in  which  Dionysius  was  engaged 

I  with  the  Patripassians  of  Pcntapolis  has  already  been 

•  adverted  to.     Their  tenet  of  the  incarnation  of  the 

Father  {that  is,  of  the  one  God  without  distinction  of 

Persons),  a  tenet  most  repugnant  toevei^-scripturally- 

126  Sabellianism,  [chap.  L 

informed  mind,  was  refuted  at  once,  by  insisting  on  the 
essential  character  of  the  Son  as  representing  and  re- 
vealing the  Father  ;  by  arguing,  that  on  the  very  face 
of  Scripture,  the  Christ  who  is  there  set  before  us, 
(whatever  might  be  the  mystery  of  His  nature,)  is  cer- 
tainly delineated  as  one  absolute  and  real  Person, 
complete  in  Himself,  sent  by  the  Father,  doing  His 
will,  and  mediating  between  Him  and  man;  and  that, 
this  being  the  case.  His  Person  could  not  be  the  same 
with  that  of  the  Father,  who  sent  Him,  by  any  process 
of  reasoning,  which  would  not  also  prove  any  two  indi- 
vidual men  to  have  one  literal  personality ;  that  is,  if 
there  be  any  analogy  at  all  between  the  ordinary  sense 
of  the  word  "  person  "  and  that  in  which  the  idea  is 
applied  in  Scripture  to  the  Father  and  the  Son  :  for 
instance,  by  what  artifice  of  interpretation  can  the 
beginning  of  St.  John's  Gospel,  or  the  second  chapter 
of  St  Paul's  Epistle  to  the  Philippians  be  made  to 
harmonize  with  the  notion,  that  the  one  God,  simply 
became  and  is  man,  in  every  sense  in  which  He  can 
still  be  spoken  of  as  God  ? 

Writing  zealously  and  freely  on  this  side  of  the 
Catholic  doctrine,  Dionysius  laid  himself  open  to  the 
animadversion  of  timid  and  narrow-minded  men,  who 
were  unwilling  to  receive  the  truth  in  that  depth  and 
fulness  in  which  Scripture  reveals  it,  and  who  thought 
that  orthodoxy  consisted  in  being  at  all  times  careful 
to  comprehend  in  one  phrase  or  formula  the  whole  of 
what  is  believed  on  any  article  of  faith.  The  Roman 
Church,  even  then  celebrated  for  its  vigilant,  perhaps 
its  over  earnest  exactness,  in  matters  of  doctrine  and 
discipline,  was  made  the  arbiter  of  the  controversy. 
A  council  was  held  under  the  presidency  of  Dionysius 

t  (about  A.D.  260),  in  which  the  Alexandrian 
prelate  was  accused  by  the  Pentapolitans  of  asserting 
liiat  the  Son  of  God  is  made  and  created,  distinct  in 
nature  from  the  incommunicable  essence  of  the 
Father,  "as  the  vine  is  distinct  from  the  vine-drcsscr," 
aid  in  consequence,  not  eternal.  The  illustration 
iTiputed  to  Dionysius  in  this  accusation,  being  a 
reference  to  our  Lord's  words  in  the  fifteentli  chapter 
of"  St.  John,  is  a  sufficient  explanation  by  itself  of  the 
real  drift  of  his  statement,  even  if  his  satisfactory 
answer  were  not  extant,  to  set  at  rest  all  doubt  con- 
"^crning  his  orthodoxy.  In  that  answer,  addressed  to 
liis  namesake  of  Rome,  he  observes  first,  that  his 
letter  to  the  Sabellians,  being  directed  against  a  par- 
ticular error,  of  course  contained  only  so  much  of  the 
entire  Catholic  doctrine  as  was  necessary  for  the 
refutation  of  that  error ; — that  his  use  of  the  words 
"J'ather  and  Son,"  in  itself  implied  his  belief  in  a  one- 
ness of  nature  between  Them  ; — that  in  speaking  of 
the  Son  as  "made,"  he  had  no  intention  of  distin- 
guishing "  made  "  from  "  begotten,"  but,  including  all 
kinds  of  origination  under  the  term,  he  used  it  to 
discriminate  between  the  Son  and  His  undcrived  self- 
originating  Father ; — lastly,  that  in  matter  of  fact  he 
did  confess  the  Catholic  doctrine  in  its  most  unquali- 
fied and  literal  sense,  and  in  its  fullest  and  most 
accurate  exposition.  In  this  letter  he  even  recognizes 
the  celebrated  Honioiision  (consitbstaiitial)  which  was 
afterwards  adopted  at  Nicfea.  However,  in  spite  of 
these  avowals,  later  writers,  and  even  Basil  himself, 
do  not  scruple  to  complain  of  Dionysius  as  having 
sown  the  first  seeds  of  Arianism  ;  Basil  confessing  the 
while  that  his  error  was  accidental,  occasioned  by  his 
vehement  opposition  to  the  Sabcllian  heresy. 

128  Sabellianism.  [chap.  i. 

Gregory  of  Neocsesarea,  on  the  other  hand,  is  so  far 
more  hardly  circumstanced  than  Dionysius,  first,  inas- 
much as  the  charge  against  him  was  not  made  till  after 
his  death,  and  next,  because  he  is  strangely  accused 
of  a  tendency  to  Sabellian  as  well  as  Arian  errors. 
Without  accounting  for  the  former  of  these  charges, 
which  does  not  now  concern  us,  I  offer  to  the  reader 
the  following  explanation  of  the  latter  calumny.  Sa- 
bellianism, in  its  second  or  emanative  form,  had  con- 
siderable success  in  the  East  before  and  at  the  date  of 
Gregory.  In  the  generation  before  him,  Hermogenes, 
who  professed  it,  had  been  refuted  by  Theophilus  and 
Tertullian,  as  well  as  by  Gregory's  master,  Origen, 
who  had  also  reclaimed  from  a  similar  error  Ambrosius 
and  Beryllus^  Gregory  succeeded  him  in  the  con- 
troversy with  such  vigour,  that  his  writings  were  suffi- 
cient to  extinguish  the  heresy,  when  it  reappeared  in 
Pontus  at  a  later  period.  He  was,  moreover,  the  prin- 
cipal bishop  in  the  first  Council  held  against  Paulus 
of  Samosata,  whose  heresy  was  derived  from  the 
emanative  school.  The  Synodal  Letter  addressed  by 
the  assembled  bishops  to  the  heresiarch,  whether  we 
ascribe  it  to  this  first  Council,  with  some  critics,  or 
with  others  to  the  second,  or  even  with  Basnage  reject 
it  as  spurious,  at  least  illustrates  the  line  of  argument 
which  it  was  natural  to  direct  against  the  heresy,  and 
shows  how  easily  it  might  be  corrupted  into  an  Arian 
meaning.  To  the  notion  that  the  Son  was  but  in- 
habited by  a  divine  power  or  presence  impersonal,  and 
therefore  had  no  real  existence  before  He  came  in 
the  flesh,  it  was  a  sufficient  answer  to  appeal  to  the 

•  Euseb.  Hist.  iv.    24.     Theod.  Haer.  i.    19.      TcrtuU.   in    Hcrmog. 
Huet.  Origen,  lib.  i. 

CT.  v.] 



^^rcat  works  ascnocd  to  Him  in  the  beginning  of  all 
"lings,  and  especially  to  those  angelic  manifestations 
^y  -which  God  revealed  Himself  lo  the  elder  Church, 
aiicj  ivhich  were  universally  admitted  to  be  rcpresen- 
'*tions  of  the  Living  and  Personal  Word.  The 
-synodal  Letter  accordingly  professes  a  belief  in  the 
^on,  as  the  Image  and  Power  of  God,  which  was 
^Gfore  the  worlds,  in  absolute  existence,  the  living  and 
'*^telligert  Cause  of  creation  ;  and  cites  some  of  the 
^ost  striking  texts  descriptive  of  His  ministrative 
Office  under  the  Jewish  law,  such  as  His  appearance 
to  Abraham  and  Jacob,  and  to  Moses  in  the  burning 
bush^.  Such  is  the  statement,  in  opposition  to  Paulus 
of  Samosata,  put  forth  by  Gregory  and  his  associate 
bishops  at  Antioch;  and,  the  circumstances  of  the 
controversy  being  overlooked,  it  is  obvious  how  easily 
it  may  be  brought  to  favour  the  hypothesis,  that  the 
Son  is  in  all  respects  distinct  from  the  Father,  and 
by  nature  as  well  as  in  revealed  office  inferior  to  Him. 
Lastly,  it  so  happened,  that  in  the  course  of  the 
third  century,  the  word  Homoiisio/i  became  more  or 
less  connected  with  the  Gnostic,  Manichzcan,  and 
Sabellian  theologies.  Hence  early  writers,  who  had 
but  opposed  these  heresies,  seemed  in  a  subsequent 
age  to  have  opposed  what  had  been  by  that  time 
received  as  the  characteristic  of  orthodoxy ;  as,  on 
the  other  hand,  the  Catholics,  on  their  adopting  it  in 
that  later  age,  were  accused  of  wiiat  in  an  earlier  time 
would  have  been  the  Sabellian  error,  or  again  of  the 
introduction  of  corporeal  notions  into  their  creed. 
But  of  this  more  hereafter. 

130  Sabellianism.  [chap.  i. 

Here  a  close  may  be  put  to  our  inquiry  into  the 
circumstances  under  which  Arianism  appeared  in  the 
early  Church.  The  utmost  that  has  been  proposed 
has  been  to  classify  and  arrange  phenomena  which 
present  themselves  on  the  surface  of  the  history  ;  and 
this,  with  a  view  of  preparing  the  reader  for  the  direct 
discussion  of  the  doctrine  which  Arianism  denied,  and 
for  the  proceedings  on  the  part  of  the  Church  which 
that  denial  occasioned.  Especially  has  it  been  my 
object  in  this  introduction,  following  the  steps  of  our 
great  divines,  to  rescue  the  Alexandrian  Fathers  from 
the  calumnies  which,  with  bad  intentions  either  to 
them  or  to  the  orthodox  cause,  have  been  so  freely 
and  so  fearlessly  cast  upon  them.  Whether  Judaism 
or  whether  Platonism  had  more  or  less  to  do  in  pre- 
paring the  way  for  the  Arian  heresy,  are  points  of 
minor  importance,  compared  with  the  vindication  of 
those  venerable  men,  the  most  learned,  most  eloquent, 
and  most  zealous  of  the  Ante-Nicene  Christians. 
With  this  view  it  has  been  shown  above,  that,  though 
the  heresy  openly  commenced,  it  but  accidentally 
commenced  in  Alexandria ;  that  no  Alexandrian  of 
name  advocated  it,  and  that>  on  its  appearance,  it  was 
forthwith  expelled  from  the  Alexandrian  Church, 
together  with  its  author  ^ ; — next,  that,  even  granting 
Platonism  originated  it,  of  which  there  is  no  proof, 
still  there  are  no  grounds  for  implicating  the  Alexan- 
drian Fathers  in  its  formation ;  that  while  the  old 
Platonism,  which  they  did  favour,  had  no  part  in  the 
origination  of  the  Arian  doctrine,  the  new  Platonism 
or  Eclecticism  which  may  be  conceived  to  have  arian- 
ized,  received  no  countenance  from   them  ;    that 

*  [Vid.  Athan.  Apol.  adv.  Arian.  52,  and  Hist.  Arian.  78  fin.] 


Eclecticism    must   abstractedly  be   referred   to  their 
schools,  it  arose  out  of  them  in  no  more  exact  sense 
"lan  error  ever  springs  from  truth  ;   that,  instead  of 
''^^iiig  welcomed  by  them,  the  sight  of  it,  as  soon  as  it 
"'^s  detected,  led  them  rather  to  condemn  their  own 
olcierand  innocent  philosophy  ;  and  that,  in  Alexan- 
'''"ia,  there  was  no  Eclectic  successor  to  Ammonius 
'■^Vlio  concealed  his  infidelity  to  the  last),  till  after  the 
'- *^ mmencement  of  the  Arian  troubles  ; — further,  that 
St-anting  (what  is  undeniable)  that  the  Alexandrian 
■^athers  sometimes  use  phrases  which  are  similar  to 
*Viose  afterwards  adopted  by  the  heretics,  these  were 
•Occidents,  not  the  characteristics  of  their  creed,  and 
■\\"ere  employed  from  a  studied  verba!  imitation  of  the 
Jewish  and  phiJosophica!  systems ;— of  the  philoso- 
phical, in  order  to  conceal  their  own  depth  of  meaning, 
and  to  concihate  the  heathen,  a  duty  to  which  their 
peculiar  functions  in  the  Christian  world  especially 
bound  them,  and  of  the  Jewish,  from  an  affectionate 
reverence  for  the  early  traces,  in  the  Old  Testament, 
of  God's  long-mcditatcd  scheme  of  mercy  to  manlcind  j 
— or  again,  that  where  they  seem  to  arianize,   it   is 
from  incompleteness  rather  than  from   unsoundness 
ia  their  confessions,  occasioned  by  the  necessity  of  op- 
posing a  contrary  error  tlien  infecting  the  Church  ; 
that  five  Fathers,  who  have  more  especially  incurred 
the  chaise  of  pliilosophizing  in  their  creed,  belong  to 
the  schools  of  Rome  and  Antioch,  as  well  as  of  Alex- 
andria, and  that  the  most  unguarded  speculator  in  the 
Alexandrian.  Origen,  is  the  very  writer  lirst  to  detect 
for  us,  and  to  denounce  the  Arian  tenet,  at  feast  sixty 
years  before  it  openly  presented  itself  to  the  world. 
Oa  the  other  hand,  if.  dismissing  this  side  of  the 

132  Sabelltanism.  [chap.  i. 

question,  we  ask  whence  the  heresy  actually  arose,  we 
find  that  contemporary  authors  ascribe  it  partially  to 
Judaism  and  Eclecticism,  and  more  expressly  to  the 
influence  of  the  Sophists  ;  that  Alexander,  to  whose 
lot  it  fell  first  to  withstand  it,  refers  us  at  once  to 
Antioch  as  its  original  seat,  to  Judaism  as  its  ultimate 
source,  and  to  the  subtleties  of  disputation  as  the 
instrument  of  its  exhibition  :  that  Arius  and  his 
principal  supporters  were  pupils  of  the  school  of 
Antioch ;  and  lastly,  that  in  this  school  at  the  date 
fixed  by  Alexander,  the  above-mentioned  elements  of 
the  heresy  are  discovered  in  alliance,  almost  in  union, 
Paulus  of  Samosata,  the  judaizing  Sophist,  being  the 
favourite  of  a  court  which  patronized  Eclecticism, 
when  it  was  neglected  at  Alexandria. 

It  is  evident  that  deeper  and  more  interesting  ques- 
tions remain,  than  any  which  have  here  been  ex- 
amined. The  real  secret  causes  of  the  heresy  ;  its 
connexion  with  the  character  of  the  age,  with  the 
opinions  then  afloat,  viewed  as  active  moral  influences, 
not  as  parts  of  a  system ;  its  position  in  the  general 
course  of  God's  providential  dealings  with  His 
Church,  and  in  the  prophecies  of  the  New  Testament ; 
and  its  relation  towards  the  subsequently  developed 
corruptions  of  Christianity ;  these  are  subjects  towards 
which  some  opening  may  have  been  incidentally 
made  for  inquirers,  but  which  are  too  large  to  be 
imagined  in  the  design  of  a  work  such  as  the  present. 

The  teaching  of  the  ante-nicene  church  in 
its  relation  to  the  arian  hekesv. 


It  has  appeared  in  the  foregoing  Chapter,  that  the 

temper  of  the  Ante-Nicene  Church  was  opposed  to 

the  imposition  of  doctrinal  tests  upon  lier  members  ; 

__and  on  tlie  other  hand,  that  such  a  measure  became 

pessary   in   proportion   as  the  cogency  of  Apos- 

SUc  Tradition  was  weakened  by  lapse  of  time.     This 

I  subject  which  will  bear  some  further  remarks ; 

1  will  lead  to  an  investigation  of  the  principle  upon 

khich  the  formation  and  imposition  of  creeds  rests. 

■  this,  I  shall   delineate  the   Catholic   doctrine 

;  as  held  in  the  first  ages  of  Christianity;  and 

I,  the  Arian  substitution  for  it 

I  have  already  observed,  that  the  knowledge  of  the 
[Christian  mysteries  was,  in  those  times,  accounted  as 
i  privilege,  to  be  eagerly  coveted.     It  was  not  likely, 

134     O^  ^^^  P7'inciple  of  the  Forntatioti  [cH.  ii. 

then,  that  reception  of  them  would  be  accounted  a 
test ;  which  implies  a  concession  on  the  part  of  the 
recipient,  not  an  advantage.  The  idea  of  disbelieving, 
or  criticizing  the  great  doctrines  of  the  faith,  from  the 
nature  of  the  case,  would  scarcely  occur  to  the  primi- 
tive Christians.  These  doctrines  were  the  subject  of 
an  Apostolical  Tradition  ;  they  were  the  very  truths 
which  had  been  lately  revealed  to  mankind.  They 
had  been  committed  to  the  Church's  keeping,  and 
were  dispensed  by  her  to  those  who  sought  them,  as  a 
favour.  They  were  facts,  not  opinions.  To  come  to 
the  Church  was  all  one  with  expressing  a  readiness  to 
receive  her  teaching ;  to  hesitate  to  believe,  after 
coming  for  the  sake  of  believing,  would  be  an  incon- 
sistency too  rare  to  require  a  special  provision  against 
the  chance  of  it^  It  was  sufficient  to  meet  the  evil  as 
it  arose :  the  power  of  excommunication  and  deposi- 
tion was  in  the  hands  of  the  ecclesiastical  authorities, 
and,  as  in  the  case  of  Paulus,  was  used  impartially. 
Yet,  in  the  matter  of  fact,  such  instances  of  contumacy 
were  comparatively  rare;  and  the  Ante-Nicene  heresies 
were  in  many  instances  the  innovations  of  those  who 
had  never  been  in  the  Church,  or  who  had  already 
been  expelled  from  it. 

We  have  some  difficulty  in  putting  ourselves  into 
the  situation  of  Christians  in  those  times,  from  the 
circumstance  that  the  Holy  Scriptures  are  now  our 
sole  means  of  satisfying  ourselves  on  poifiU  of  doctrine. 
Thus,  every  one  who  comes  to  the  Church  considers 
himself  entitled  to  judge  and  decide  individually 
upon    its    creed.     But    in    that    primitive    age,   the 

^  [Hoc  penitus  absurdum  est,  ut  discipulus,  ad  magistrum  vadens, 
tmte  sit  artifex  quam  doceatur,  &c.     Hieron.  adv.  Lucif.  12.] 

4ECT.  r.J      ami  Imposition  oj  Creeds.  135 

Apostolical  Tradition,  that  is,  the  Creed,  was  prac- 
tically the  chief  source  of  instruction,  especially 
considering  the  obscurities  of  Scripture ;  and  being 
withdrawn  from  public  view,  it  could  not  be  subjected 
to  the  degradation  of  a  comparison,  on  the  part  of 
inquirers  and  ha!f-Christians,  with  those  written  docu- 
ments which  are  vouchsafed  to  us  from  the  same 
inspired  authorities.  As  for  the  baptized  and  incor- 
porate members  of  the  Church,  they  of  course  had  the 
privilege  of  comparing  the  written  and  the  oral 
tradition,  and  might  exercise  it  as  profitably  as  in 
comparing  and  harmonizing  Scripture  with  itself 
But  before  baptism,  the  systematic  knowledge  was 
withheld ;  and  without  it.  Scripture,  instead  of  being 
the  source  of  instruction  on  the  doctrines  of  the 
Trinity  and  Incarnation,  was  scarcely  more  than  a 
sealed  book,  needing  an  interpretation,  amply  and 
powerfully  as  it  served  the  purpose  of  proving  those 
doctrines,  when  they  were  once  disclosed.  And  so 
much  on  the  reluctance  of  the  primitive  Fathers  to 
publish  creeds,  on  the  ground  that  the  knowledge  of 
Christian  doctrines  was  a  privilege  reserved  for  those 
who  were  baptized,  and  in  no  sense  a  subject  of  hesi- 
tation and  dispute. — It  may  bo  added,  that  the  very 
love  of  power,  which  in  every  age  will  sway  the  bulk 
of  those  who  are  exposed  to  the  temptation  of  it,  and 
ecclesiastics  in  the  number,  would  indispose  them  to 
innovate  upon  a  principle  which  made  tliemselves  the 
especial  guardians  of  revealed  truth^. 

Their  backwardness  proceeded  also  from  a  profound 
reverence  for  the  sacred  mysteries  of  whicJi  they  were 
the  dispensers.     Here  they  present  us  with  the  true 

*  ViJc  Hawkins  on  Unauihcriialjvc  Tra.rUaQ. 

1 36      On  the  Principle  of  the  Formation  [cH.  IL 

exhibition  of  that  pious  sensitiveness  which  the 
heathen  had  conceived,  but  could  not  justly  execute. 
The  latter  had  their  mysteries,  but  their  rude  attempts 
were  superseded  by  the  divine  discipline  of  the  Gospel, 
which  here  acted  in  the  office  which  is  peculiarly  its 
own,  rectifying,  combining,  and  completing  the  inven- 
tions of  uninstructed  nature.  If  the  early  Church 
regarded  the  very  knowledge  of  the  truth  as  a  fearful 
privilege,  much  more  did  it  regard  that  truth  itself  as 
glorious  and  awful ;  and  scarcely  conversing  about  it 
to  her  children,  shrank  from  the  impiety  of  subjecting 
it  to  the  hard  gaze  of  the  multitude  3.  We  still  pray, 
in  the  Confirmation  service,  for  those  who  are  intro- 
duced into  the  full  privileges  of  the  Christian  cove- 
nant, that  they  may  be  "  filled  with  the  spirit  of  God's 
holy  fear ;"  but  the  meaning  and  practical  results  of 
deep-seated  religious  reverence  were  far  better  under- 
stood in  the  primitive  times  than  now,  when  the 
infidelity  of  the  world  has  corrupted  the  Church. 
Now,  we  allow  ourselves  publicly  to  canvass  the 
most  solemn  truths  in  a  careless  or  fiercely  argumen- 
tative way;  truths,  which  it  is  as  useless  as  it  is 
unseemly  to  discuss  in  public,  as  being  attainable 
only  by  the  sober  and  watchful,  by  slow  degrees,  with 

'  Sozomen  gives  this  reason  for  not  inserting  the  Nicene  Creed  in  his 
history  x  "  I  formerly  deemed  it  necessary  to  transcribe  the  confession  of 
faith  drawn  up  by  the  unanimous  consent  of  this  Council  [the  Nicene], 
in  order  that  posterity  might  possess  a  public  record  of  the  truth ;  but 
subsequently  I  was  persuaded  to  the  contrary  by  some  godly  and  learned 
friends,  who  represented  that  such  matters  ought  to  be  kept  secret,  as 
being  only  requisite  to  be  known  by  disciples  and  their  instructors 
(fjivaraiq  koI  ftro-Taycuyots),  and  it  is  possible  that  the  volume  will  fall 
into  the  hands  of  the  unlearned  (twv  aymviyTwv)."  Hist.  i.  20.  Bohn'a 

iJtpeiiilcnce  on  the  Giver  of  wisdom,  and  with  strict 
obedience  to  the  light  which  has  already  been  granted. 
Then,  they  would  scarcely  express  in  writing,  what  is 
now  not  only  preached  to  the  mixed  crowds  who 
frequent  our  churches,  but  circulated  in  print  among 
3'l  ranks  and  classes  of  the  unclean  and  the  profane, 
snd  pressed  upon  all  who  choose  to  purchase  it.  Nay, 
so  perplexed  is  the  present  state  of  things,  that  the 
Church  is  obliged  to  change  her  course  of  acting,  after 
"le  spirit  of  the  alteration  made  at  Nic^a,  and  unwiU 
'"igly  to  take  part  in  the  theological  discussions  of  the 
''^y,  as  a  man  crushes  venomous  creatures  of  necessity, 
Powerful  to  do  it,  but  loathing  the  employment. 
■Hiis  is  the  apology  which  the  author  of  the  present 
^ork,  as  far  as  it  is  worth  while  to  introduce  himself, 
offers  to  all  sober-minded  and  zealous  Christians,  for 
"Venturing  to  exhibit  publicly  the  great  evangelical 
doctrines,  not  indeed  in  the  medium  of  controversy  or 
proof  (which  would  be  a  still  more  humiliating 
office),  but  in  an  historical  and  explanatory  form 
And  he  earnestly  trusts,  that,  while  doing  so,  he  may 
be  betrayed  into  no  familiarity  or  extravagance  of 
expression,  cautiously  lowering  the  Truth,  and  (as  it 
were),  wrapping  it  in  reverent  language,  and  so 
depositing  it  in  its  due  resting-place,  which  is  the 
Christian's  heart :  guiltless  of  those  unutterable 
profanations  with  which  a  scrutinizing  infidelity 
wounds  and  lacerates  it.  Here,  again,  is  strikingly 
instanced  the  unfitness  of  books,  compared  with 
private  communication,  for  the  purposes  of  religious 
instruction  ;  levelling,  as  they  do,  the  distinctions  of 

Id  and  temper   by  the   formality  of  the  written 
■acter,  and  conveying  each  kind  of  kno^'tcdge  the 

138      On  the  Principle  of  the  Formation  [ch.  ii. 

less  perfectly,  in  proportion  as  it  is  of  a  moral  nature, 
and  requires  to  be  treated  with  delicacy  and  discrim- 


As  to  the  primitive  Fathers,  with  their  reverential 
feelings  towards  the  Supreme  Being,  great  must  have 
been  their  indignation  first,  and  then  their  perplexity, 
when  apostates  disclosed  and  corrupted  the  sacred 
truth,  or  when  the  heretical  or  philosophical  sects 
made  guesses  approximating  to  it.  Though  the 
heretics  also  had  their  mysteries,  yet,  it  is  remarkable, 
that  as  regards  the  high  doctrines  of  the  Gospel,  they 
in  great  measure  dropped  that  restraint  and  reserve 
by  which  the  Catholics  partly  signified,  and  partly 
secured  a  reverence  for  them.  Tertullian  sharply 
exposes  the  want  of  a  grave  and  orderly  discipline 
among  them  in  his  day.  "  It  is  uncertain,"  he  says, 
who  among  them  is  catechumen,  who  believer.  They 
meet  alike,  they  hear  alike,  they  pray  alike ;  nay, 
though  the  heathen  should  drop  in,  they  will  cast 
holy  things  to  dogs,  and  their  pearls,  false  jewels  as 
they  are,  to  swine.  This  overthrow  of  order  they  call 
simplicity,  and  our  attention  to  it  they  call  mere- 
tricious embellishment.  They  communicate  with  all 
men  promiscuously ;  it  being  nothing  to  them  in  what 
they  diff*er  from  them,  provided  they  join  with  them 
for  the  destruction  of  the  truth.  They  are  all  high- 
minded  ;  all  make  pretence  of  knowledge.  Their 
catechumens  are  perfect  in  the  faith  before  they  are 
fully  taught.  Even  their  women  are  singularly 
forward  ;  venturing,  that  is,  to  teach,  to  argue,  to 
exorcise,  to  undertake  cures,  nay,  perhaps  to  baptise"*." 

*  Tcrtull.  de  Prapscr.  hap  ret.  §  41. 

and  Imposititm  of  Creeds. 

The  heretical  spirit  is  ever  one  and  the  same  in  its 
mous  forms :  this  description  of  the  Gnostics  was 
exactly  paralleled,  in  all  those  points  for  which  we 
have  introduced  it  here,  in  the  history  of  Arianism  ; 
historically   distinct   as    is    the   latter    system    from 
Gnosticism.     Ariiis  began  by  throwing  out  his  ques- 
tions as  a  subject  of  debate  for  public  consideration  ; 
and  at  once  formed  crowds  of  controversialists  from 
those  classes  who  were  the  least  qualified  or  deserving 
to  take    part    in    the    discussion.     Alexander,   his 
diocesan,  accuses  him  of  siding  with  the  Jews  and 
heathen  against  the  Church  ;  and  certainly  wc  learn 
'^rom  the  historians,  that  tlie   heathen    philosophers 
Were  from  the  first  warmly  interested  in  the  dispute, 
so  that  some  of  them  attended  the  Nicenc  Council, 
for  the  chance  of  ascertaining  the  orthodox  doctrine. 
Alexander  also  charges  him  with  employing  women 
fn  his  disturbance  of  the  Church,  apparently  referring 
at  the  same  time  to  the  Apostle's  prediction  of  them. 
He  speaks   especially   of    the    younger  females    as 
zealous  in  his  cause,  and  as  traversing  Alexandria  in 
their  eagerness  to  promote  it ; — a  fact  confirmed  by 
Epiphaniiis,  who  speaks  (if  he  may  be   credited)  of 
as  man>'  as  seven  hundred  from  the  religious  societies 
of  that  city  at  once  taking  part  with  the  heresiarchS. 
But  Arius  carried  his  agitation  lower  still.     It  is  on 
no  other  authority  than  that  of  the  historian  Pliilo- 
stoigius,  his  own  partisan,  that  we  are  assured  of  his 
composing  and  setting  to  music,  songs  on  the  subject 
of  his  doctrine  for  the  use  of  the  rudest  classes  of 
society,  with  aview  of  familiarizing  them  to  it.     Other 
^■f  his  compositions,  of  a  higher  literary  excellence, 
^^H|m.L6.    TbcoJ.  Hl3^  i.  iv.    S02.  i.  iS.    Ki>iph.  h»r.  lilt.  3. 

140      On  the  Prineipk  of  the  Formation 

were  used  at  table  as  a  religious  accompanimeol 
the  ordinary  meal ;  one  of  which,  in  part  preserved  \if 
Athanasius,  enters  upon  the  most  sacred  portions  of 
the  theological  question^.  The  success  of  these 
cxF;rtions  in  drawing  public  attention  to  his  doctrine 
is  lecorded  by  Eusebius  of  CsEsarea,  who,  though  no 
friend  of  the  heresiarch  himself,  is  unsuspicious 
evidence  as  being  one  of  his  party.  "'  From  a  Httlc 
spark  a  great  fire  was  kindled.  The  quarrel  began 
in  the  Alexandrian  Church,  then  it  spread  through  the 
whole  of  Egypt,  Lybia,  and  the  farther  Thebais  ;  then 
it  ravaged  the  other  provinces  and  cities,  till  the  war 
of  words  enlisted  not  only  the  prelates  of  the  churches, 
but  the  people  toa  At  length  the  exposure  was  so 
extraordinary,  that  even  in  the  heathen  tlieatres,  the 
divine  doctrine  became  the  subject  of  the  vilest  ridi- 
cule^." Such  was  Arianism  at  its  commencement; 
and  if  it  was  so  indecent  in  tlie  hands  of  its  originator, 
who,  in  spite  of  his  courting  the  multitude,  was  di^, 
tinguishcd  by  a  certain  reserve  and  loftiness  iiij 
personal  deportment,  much  more  flagrant  waj 
impiety  under  the  direction  of  his  less  refined  { 
ccssors.  Valens,  the  favourite  bishop  of  Constat 
exposed  the  solemnities  of  the  Eucharist  in  a  jutS 
examination  to  which  Jews  and  heathen  were  a 
ted  ;  Eudoxius.  the  Arianizer  of  the  Gothic  natt 
when  installed  in  the  patriarchal  throne  of  Coosti 
nopic,  uttered  as  his  first  words  a  profane  jest,  \ 
was  received  with  loud  laughter  in  the  ncwly^ 
crated  Church  of  St  Sophia ;  and  Aetius,  the  fos 
of    the    Anomceans,    was    tlie    grossest    and 

*  Phlkuil.  Ih  1.    AlhAn.  In  Aiian.  i.  j  ;  de  Spi.  1 
>  BomU  VU.  Conn.  II.  61.  Vid.  Gccg.  Nu.  Oia 

i-  I4*i£n-  8lJ 

t  i  J      and  Imposition  of  Creeds.  141 

ble  of  buffoons^.  Later  still,  wo  find  the  same 
description  of  the  heretical  party  in  a  discourse  of  the 
ii'nd  and  amiable  Gregory  of  Nazianzus.  With  a 
reference  to  the  Arian  troubles  he  says,  "  Now  is 
priest  an  empty  name  ;  contempt  is  poured  upon  the 
rulers,  as  Scripture  says.  . , .  All  fear  is  banished  from 
our  souls,  shamclessness  has  taken  its  place.  Know- 
ledge is  now  at  the  will  of  him  who  chooses  it,  and  all 
the  deep  mysteries  of  the  Spirit.  We  are  all  pious, 
because  we  condemn  the  impiety  of  others.  We  use 
the  infidels  as  our  arbiters,  and  cast  what  is  holy  to 
dogs,  and  pearls  before  swine,  publishing  divine  truths 
to  profane  ears  and  minds  ;  and,  wretches  as  we  are, 
we  carefully  fulfil  the  wishes  of  our  enemies,  while, 
without  blushing,  we  '  pollute  ourselves  in  our  inven- 
tions^.' " 

Enough  has  now  been  said,  by  way  of  describing 
the  condition  of  the  Catholic  Church,  defenceless 
from  the  very  sacredness  and  refinement  of  its  disci- 
pline, when  the  attack  of  Arianism  was  made  upon  it; 
insulting  its  silence,  provoking  it  to  argue,  unsettling 
and  seducing  its  members  1,  and  in  consequence 
requring  its  authoritative  judgment  on  the  point  in 
dispute:     And  in  addition  to  the  instruments  of  evil 

•  Athan.  Apol,  conlr.  Arian.  31.  Socr.  ii.  43.  Cave,  Hist.  Lifcrar. 
Tol,  i.  [Eustathius  speaks  of  Ihe  iropo^ofoi  t^s  'Apit'ou  Qv^tKift 
IM<r6)(op<il.     Phol.  Bibl.  p.  759.  3;.] 

»  CKg.  Nai.  Or^,  i.  i3S;  pi.  79.] 

'  ["  Is  i I  not  enough  to  disiiaci  a  man,  on  mere  hearing',  though 
Bnable  to  cnnlroven,  anil  to  make  him  st'jp  his  ears,  from  astonishment 
at  the  novelty  of  what  he  hears  said,  which  even  to  mention  is  to  blas- 
pheme? "  Aih.  Oral.i.  35-  Hence,  as  if  feeling  the  matter  10  be  beyond 
argument,  Alhanasi us  could  but  call  the  innoyatois  "Atioiminl«e»,"frotn 
tilt:  Geiceiiess of  tbcw  "  ii^sc  dixit."     Vid.  Athan.  Transl.  vol.  ii.  p.  377.] 

142      On  the  Principle  of  the  Forfnaiion  [ch.  il 

which  were  internally  directed  against  it,  the  Eclectics 
had  by  this  time  extended  their  creed  among  the 
learned,  with  far  greater  decorum  than  the  Arians, 
but  still  so  as  practically  to  interpret  the  Scripturc-s  in 
the  place  of  the  Church,  and  to  state  dogmatically 
the  conclusions  for  which  the  Arian  controvertists 
were  but  indirectly  preparing  the  mind  by  their 
objections  and  sophisms. 

Under  these  circumstances,  it  was  the  duty  of  the 
rulers  of  the  Church,  at  whatever  sacrifice  of  their 
feelings,  to  discuss  the  subject  in  controversy  fully 
and  unreservedly,  and  to  state  their  decision  openly. 
The  only  alternative  was  an  unmanly  non-interference, 
and  an  arbitrary  or  treacherous  prohibition  of  the  dis- 
cussion. To  enjoin  silence  on  perplexed  inquirers,  is 
not  to  silence  their  thoughts  ;  and  in  the  case  of 
serious  minds,  it  is  but  natural  to  turn  to  the  spiritual 
ruler  for  advice  and  relief,  and  to  feel  disappointment 
at  the  timidity,  or  irritation  at  the  harshness,  of  those 
who  refuse  to  lead  a  lawful  inquiry  which  they  cannot 
stifle 2.  Such  a  course,  then,  is  most  unwise  as  well  as 
cruel,  inasmuch  as  it  throws  the  question  in  dispute 
upon  other  arbitrators ;  or  rather,  it  is  more  com- 
monly insincere,  the  traitorous  act  of  those  who  care 
little  for  the  question  in  dispute,  and  are  content  that 
opinions  should  secretly  prevail  which  they  profess 
to  condemiL  The  Nicene  Fathers  might  despair  of 
reclaiming  the  Arian  party,  but  they  were  bound  to 

2  \KLvhwos  yap  TrpoSocrtas,  ci'  t^  firf  irpo^ctpisis  airoSi^vai  rots 
vepl  Oeov  dTroKpurcis  toIs  dyavoKn  tov  Kvptov,  Basil,  Ep.  7.  Vide 
Hil.  de  Trin.  xii.  20. 

ercxt  a  witness  for  the  truth,  which  might  be  a  g-uide 
and  a  warning  to  all  Catholics,  against  the  lying  spirit 
wliich  was  abroad  in  the  Church,  These  remarks 
apply  to  a  censure  which  is  sometimes  passed  on 
Ihem,  as  if  it  ivas  their  duty  to  have  shut  up  the 
question  in  the  words  of  Scripture ;  for  the  words  of 
iJcripture  were  the  very  subject  in  controversy,  and 
to  have  prohibited  the  controversy,  would,  in  fact, 
liave  been  but  to  insult  the  perplexed,  and  to  ex- 
trad  real  encouragement  to  insidious  opponents  of 
"le  truth.- — But  it  may  be  expedient  here  to  explain 
more  fully  the  principle  of  the  obligation  which  led  to 
llidr  interposition. 

Let  it  be  observed  then,  that  as  regards  the  doctrine 
of  tile  Trinity,  the  mere  text  of  Scripture  is  not  calcu- 
lated either  to  satisfy  the  intellect  or  to  ascertain  the 
lemper  of  those  who  profess  to  accept  it  as  a  rule  of 

I.  Before  the  mind  has  been  roused  to  reflection 
and  inquisitiveness  about  its  own  acts  and  impressions, 
it  acquiesces,  if  religiously  trained,  in  that  practical 
devotion  to  the  Blessed  Trinity,  and  implicit  acknow- 
Ugment  of  the  divinity  of  Son  and  Spirit,  which 
y  Scripture  at  once  teaches  and  exemplifies.  This  is 
[  faith  of  uneducated  men,  which  is  not  the  less 
blosophically  correct,  nor  less  acceptable  to  God, 
iause  it  does  not  happen  to  be  conceived  in  those 
[Cise  statements  which  presuppose  the  action  of  tlie 
on  its  own  sentiments  and  notions.  Moral 
ings  do  not  directly  contemplate  and  reaUze  to 
]selves  the  objects  which  excite  them.  A  heathen 
(pbeying  his  conscience,  implicitly  worships  ilim  oi 
Ljn  he  has  never  distinctly  heard.     Again,  a  child 

144     ^^  ^^^  Principle  of  tlie  Formation  [ch.  ir. 

feels  not  the  less  afTectionate  reverence  towards  his 
parents,  because  he  cannot  discriminate  in  words,  nay, 
or  in  idea,  between  them  and  others.  As,  however, 
his  reason  opens,  he  might  ask  himself  concerning  the 
ground  of  his  own  emotions  and  conduct  towards 
them ;  and  might  find  that  these  are  the  correlatives 
of  their  peculiar  tenderness  towards  him,  long  and 
intimate  knowledge  of  him,  and  unhesitating  assump- 
tion of  authority  over  him  ;  all  which  he  continually 
experiences.  And  further,  he  might  trace  these 
characteristics  of  their  influence  on  him  to  the  essential 
relation  itself,  which  involves  his  own  original  debt  to 
them  for  the  gift  of  life  and  reason,  the  inestimable 
blessing  of  an  indestructible,  never-ending  existence. 
And  now  his  intellect  contemplates  the  object  of  those 
affections,  which  acted  truly  from  the  first,  and  are 
not  purer  or  stronger  merely  for  this  accession  of  know- 
ledge. This  will  tend  to  illustrate  the  sacred  subject 
to  which  we  are  directing  our  attention. 

As  the  mind  is  cultivated  and  expanded,  it  can- 
not refrain  from  the  attempt  to  analyze  the  vision 
which  influences  the  heart,  and  the  Object  in  which 
that  vision  centres  ;  nor  does  it  stop  till  it  has,  in 
some  sort,  succeeded  in  expressing  in  words,  what  has 
all  along  been  a  principle  both  of  its  affections  and  of 
its  obedience.  But  here  the  parallel  ceases  ;  the 
Object  of  religious  veneration  being  unseen,  and  dis- 
similar from  all  that  is  seen,  reason  can  but  represent 
it  in  the  medium  of  those  ideas  which  the  experience 
of  life  affords  (as  we  see  in  the  Scripture  account,  as 
far  as  it  is  addressed  to  the  intellect) ;  and  unless 
these  ideas,  however  inadequate,  be  correctly  applied 
to  it,  they  re-act  upon  the  affections,  and  deprave  the 

SECT,  l]      and  Imposition  of  Creeds.  145 

religious  principle.     This  is  exemplified  in  the  case  of 
the  heathen,   who,  trying  to   make  their  instinctive 
notion  of  the  Deity  an  object  of  reflection,  pictured  to 
their  minds  false  images,  which  eventually  gave  them 
a  pattern  and  a  sanction  for  sinning.     Thus  the  sys- 
tematic doctrine  of  the  Trinity  may  be  considered  as 
the  shadow,  projected  for  the  contemplation  of  the 
intellect,  of  the  Object  of  scriptural  ly-informed  piety: 
a  representation,  economical ;  necessarily  imperfect, 
^  being  exhibited  in  a  foreign  medium,  and  therefore 
involving  apparent  inconsistencies  or  mysteries  ;  given 
to  the  Church  by  tradition  contemporaneously  with 
those  apostolic  writings,  which  are   addressed   more 
directly  to  the  heart ;  kept  in  the  background  in  the 
infancy  of  Christianity,   when   faith   and   obedience 
Were  vigorous,  and  brought  forward  at  a  time  when, 
reason  being  disproportionately  developed,  and  aiming 
at  sovereignty  in  the  province  of  religion,  its  presence 
became  necessary  to  expel  an  usurping  idol  from  the 
house  of  God. 

If  this  account  of  the  connexion  between  the  theo- 
logical system  and  the  Scripture  implication  of  it  be 
substantially  correct,  it  will  be  seen  how  ineffectual  all 
attempts  ever  will  be  to  secure  the  doctrine  by  mere 
general  language.     It  may  be  readily  granted  that  the 
intellectual  representation  should  ever  be  subordinate 
to   the  cultivation  of  the  religious  affections.     And 
alter  all,  it  must  be  owned,  so  reluctant  is  a  well-con- 
^"•^^^ted  mind  to  reflect  on  its  own  motive  principles, 
^^    the  correct  intellectual  image,  from  its  hardness 
Outline,  may  startle  and  offend  those  who  have  all 
^^S    been    acting    upon   it.     Doubtless  there  are 
^^ions  of  the  ecclesiastical  doctrine,  presently  to  be 

1 46      On  the  Principle  of  the  Formation  [cH.  ii* 

exhibited,  which  may  at  first  sight  seem  a  refinement^ 
merely  because  the  object  and  bearings  of  them  are  not:: 
understood  without  reflection  and  experience.  But: 
what  is  left  to  the  Church  but  to  speak  out,  in  order 
to  exclude  error  ?  Much  as  we  may  wish  it,  we  can- 
not restrain  the  rovings  of  the  intellect,  or  silence  its 
clamorous  demand  for  a  formal  statement  concerning 
the  Object  of  our  worship.  If,  for  instance,  Scripture 
bids  us  adore  God,  and  adore  His  Son,  our  reason  at 
once  asks,  whether  it  does  not  follow  that  there  are 
two  Gods  ;  and  a  system  of  doctrine  becomes  unavoid- 
able ;  being  framed,  let  it  be  observed,  not  with  a 
.view  of  explaining,  but  of  arranging  the  inspired 
notices  concerning  the  Supreme  Being,  of  providing, 
not  a  consistent,  but  a  connected  statement.  There 
the  inquisitiveness  of  a  pious  mind  rests,  viz.,  when  it 
has  pursued  the  subject  into  the  mystery  which  is  its 
limit.  But  this  is  not  all.  The  intellectual  expres- 
sion of  theological  truth  not  only  excludes  heresy,  but 
directly  assists  the  acts  of  religious  worship  and 
obedience  ;  fixing  and  stimulating  the  Christian 
spirit  in  the  same  way  as  the  knowledge  of  the  One 
God  relieves  and  illuminates  the  perplexed  conscience 
of  the  religious  heathen. —  And  thus  much,  on  the 
importance  of  Creeds  to  tranquillize  the  mind  ;  the 
text  of  Scripture  being  addressed  principally  to  the 
affections,  and  of  a  religious,  not  a  philosophical 

2.  Nor,  in  the  next  place,  is  an  assent  to  the  text  of 
Scripture  sufficient  for  the  purposes  of  Christian 
fellowship.  As  the  sacred  text  was  not  intended  to 
satisfy  the  intellect,  neither  was  it  given  as  a  test  of 
,the  religious  temper  which  it  forms,  and  of  which  it  is 

'strr.  l.y     and'lmpiisitioii.  of  Creeds. 



expression.     Doubtless  no  combination  of  words 
'''ill  ascertain    an  unity  of  sentiment  in  those  who 
3dopt  them  ;  but  one  form  is  n"'re  adapted  for  the 
purpose  than  another.     Scripture  being  unsystematic, 
^id  the  faith   which   it   propounds   being   scattered 
'*>rough  its  documents,  and   understood   only  when 
"^ey  are  viewed  as  a  whole^  the  Creeds  aim  at  con- 
*^^ri[rating  its  general  spirit,  so  as  to  give  security  to 
'*ie  Church,  as  far  as  maybe,  that  its  members  take 
''i^at  definite  view  of  that  faith  which  alone  is  the  true 
^'Xc.     But,  if  this  be  the  case,  how  idle  is  it  to  suppose 
*"*.at  to   demand   assent  to   a  form  of  words  which 
^■^ppens  to  be  scriptural,  is  on  that  account  sufficient 
^^*  effect  an  unanimity  in  thought  and  action  !     If  the 
^^ — iurch  would  be  vigorous  and  influential,  it  must  be 
'^^cided  and  plain-spoken  in  its  doctrine,  and    must 
^"^ard  its  faith  rather  as  a  character  of  mind  than  as 
^-   notion.     To   attempt  comprehensions  of  opinion, 
Amiable  as  the  motive   frequently  is,  is  to   mistake 
•arrangements   of   words,   which    have   no    existence 
except  on  paper,  for  habits  which  are  realities ;  and 
ingenious  generalizations  of  discordant  sentiments  for 
that  practical  agreement  which  alone  can  lead  to  co- 
operation.    We  may  indeed  artificially  classify  light 
and  darkness  under  one  term  or  formula  ;  but  nature 
has  her  own  fixed  courses,  and  unites  mankind   by 
the  sympathy  of  moral  character,  not  by  those  forced 
resemblances  which  the  imagination  singles  out  at 
leasure  even  in  the  most  promiscuous  collection  of 
laterials.     However  plausible  may  be  the  veil  thus 
tiirown    over    heterogeneous    doctrines,   the    flimsy 
artifice   is   discomposed   so   soon   as    the    principles 
beneath  it  are  called  upon  to  move  and  act     Nor  are 


148     Oft  tlie  Principle  of  the  Formation  [cH.  11. 

these  attempted  comprehensions  innocent  ;  for,  it 
being  the  interest  of  our  enemies  to  weaken  the 
'  Church,  they  have  always  gained  a  point,  when  they 
have  put  upon  us  words  for  things,  and  persuaded  us 
to  fraternize  with  those  who,  differing  from  us  in 
essentials,  nevertheless  happen,  in  the  excursive  range 
of  opinion,  somewhere  to  intersect  that  path  of  faith, 
which  centres  in  supreme  and  zealous  devotion  to  the 
service  of  God. 

Let  it  be  granted,  then,  as  indisputable,  that  there 
are  no  two  opinions  so  contrary  to  each  other,  but 
some  form  of  words  may  be  found  vague  enough  to 
comprehend  them  both.  The  Pantheist  will  admit 
that  there  is  a  God,  and  the  Humanitarian  that  Christ 
is  God,  if  they  are  suffered  to  say  so  without  explana- 
tion. But  if  this  be  so,  it  becomes  the  duty,  as  well  as 
the  evident  policy  of  the  Church,  to  interrogate  them, 
before  admitting  them  to  her  fellowship.  If  the 
Church  be  the  pillar  and  ground  of  the  truth,  and 
bound  to  contend  for  the  preservation  of  the  faith 
once  delivered  to  it ;  if  we  are  answerable  as  ministers 
of  Christ  for  the  formation  of  one,  and  one  only, 
character  in  the  heart  of  man  ;  and  if  the  Scriptures 
are  given  us,  as  a  means  indeed  towards  that  end,  but 
inadequate  to  the  office  of  interpreting  themselves, 
except  to  such  as  live  under  the  same  Divine 
Influence  which  inspired  them,  and  which  is  expressly 
sent  down  upon  us  that  we  may  interpret  them, — 
then,  it  is  evidently  our  duty  piously  and  cautiously 
to  collect  the  sense  of  Scripture,  and  solemnly  to 
promulgate  it  in  such  a  form  as  is  best  suited,  as  far 
as  it  goes,  to  exclude  the  pride  and  unbelief  of  the 
world.     It  will  be  admitted  that,  to  deny  to  individual 

IkctTj      and  Iinpositiott  of  Creeds.  149 

s  the  use  of  terms  not  found  in  Scripture,  as 
such,  would  be  a  superstition  and  an  encroachment  on 
their  religious  liberty  ;  and  in  like  manner,  doubtless, 
to  forbid  the  authorities  of  the  Church  to  require  an 
acceptance  of  such  terms,  when  necessary,   from   its 
members,  is  to  interfere  with  the  discharge  of  their 
P^uliar  duties,  as  appointed  of  the  Holy  Ghost  to  be 
overseers  of  the  Lord's  flock.     And,  though  the  dis- 
charge of  this   office   is   the   most   momentous  and 
'^^rfu!  that  can  come  upon  mortal  man,  and  never  to 
"^  Undertaken  except  by  the  collective  illumination 
°'^  the  Heads  of  the  Church,  yet,  when  innovations 
^*"'se,  they  must  discharge   it  to   the   best  of  their 
**ility ;  and  whether  they  succed  or  fail,  whether  they 
^ve  judged  rightly  or    hastily  of  the  necessity  of 
^cir  interposition,  whether   they   devise   their   safe- 
^Vard  well  or  ill,  draw  the  line  of  Church  fellowship 
^toadly  or  narrowly,  countenance  the  profane  rcasoner, 
■^T  cause  the  scrupulous  to  stumble, — to  their  Master 
*liey  stand  or  fall,  as  in  all  other  acts  of  duty,  the 
Cibligation  itself  to  protect  the  Faith  remaining  un- 

This  is  an  account  of  the  abstract  principle  on 
which  ecclesiastical  confessions  rest.  In  its  practical 
adoption  it  has  been  softened  in  two  important 
respects.  First,  the  Creeds  imposed  have  been 
compiled  either  from  Apostolical  traditions,  or  from 
primitive  writings  ;  so  that  in  fact  the  Church  has 
never  been  obliged  literally  to  collect  the  sense  of 
Scripture.  Secondly,  the  test  has  been  used,  not  as  a 
condition  of  communion,  but  of  authority.  As  learn- 
^^H^  13  not  necessary  for  a  private  Christian,  so  neither 
^H^tEie  full  knowledge  of  the  theological  system.      Tjie 

^ J 

1 50  O71  the  Principle  of  the  Formation,  &€. 

clergy,  and  others  in  station,  must  be  questioned  as  to 
their  doctrinal  views  :  but  for  the  mass  of  the  laity,  it  is 
enough  if  they  do  not  set  up  such  counter-statements 
of  their  own,  as  imply  that  they  have  systematized^ 
and  that  erroneously.  In  the  Nicene  Council,  the 
test  was  but  imposed  on  the  Rulers  of  the  Church. 
Lay  communion  was  not  denied  to  such  as  refused  to 
take  it,  provided  they  introduced  no  novelties  of  their 
own  ;  the  anathemas  or  excommunications  being 
directed  solel}  against  the  Arian  innovators. 



^EGIN  by  laying  out  the  matter  of  evidence  for  the 
-  ^tholic  Doctrine,  as  it  is  found  in  Scripture ;  that  is, 
^suming  it  to  be  there  contained,  let  us  trace  out  the 
'^Tm  in  which  it  has  been  communicated  to  us.^the 
*sposition  of  the  phenomena,  which  imply  it,  on  the 
^^ee  of  the  Revelation,  And  here  be  it  observed,  in 
,  ^ference  to  what  has  already  been  admitted  concern- 
*  *ig  the  obscurity  of  the  inspired  documents,  that  it  is 
'Nothing  to  the  purpose  whether  or  not  wc  should  have 
teen  able  to  draw  the  following  view  of  the  doctrine 
from  them,  had  it  never  been  suggested  to  us  in  the 
Creeds,  For  it  has  been  (providentially)  so  suggested 
to  all  of  us  ;  and  the  question  is  not,  what  we  should 
have  done,  had  we  never  had  external  assistance,  but, 
taking  things  as  we  find  them,  whether,  the  clue  to 
the  meaning  of  Scripture  being  given,  (as  it  ever  has 
been  given,)  we  may  not  deduce  the  doctrine  thence, 
by  as  argumentative  a  process  as  that  which  enables 
us  to  verify  the  received  theory  of  gravitation,  which 
perhaps  we  could  never  have  discovered  for  ourselves, 
though  possessed  of  the  data  from  which  the  inventor 
drew  his  conclusions.  Indeed,  such  a  state  of  the  case 
is  analogous  to  that  in  which  the  evidence  for  Natural 
Religion   is   presented   to   us.     It   is   very   doubtful. 

152  The  Scripture  Doctrine      [chap,  ii, 

whether  the  phenomena  of  the  visible  world  would  in 
themselves  have  brought  U5  to  a  knowledge  of  the 
Creator  ;  but  the  universal  tradition  of  His  existence 
has  been  from  the  beginning  His  own  comment  upon 
them,  graciously  preceding  the  study  of  the  evidence. 
With  this  remark  I  address  myself  to  an  arduous 

First,  let  it  be  assumed  as  agreeable  both  to  reason 
and  revelation,  that  there  are  Attributes  and  Opera- 
tions, or  by  whatever  more  suitable  term  we  designate 
them,  peculiar  to  the  Deity  ;  for  instance,  creative 
and  preserving  power,  absolute  prescience,  moral 
sovereignty,  and  the  like.  These  are  ever  included 
in  our  notion  of  the  incommunicable  nature  of  God  ; 
and,  by  a  figure  of  speech,  were  there  occasion  for 
using  it,  might  be  called  one  with  God,  present, 
actively  co-operating,  and  exerting  their  own  distin- 
guishing influence,  in  all  His  laws,  providences,  and 
acts.  Thus,  if  He  be  eternal,  or  omnipresent,  we 
consider  His  knowledge,  goodness,  and  holiness,  to  be 
co-eternal  and  co-extensive  with  Him.  Moreover, 
it  would  be  an  absurdity  to  form  a  comparison 
between  these  and  God  Himself;  to  regard  them  as 
numerically  distinct  from  Him  ;  to  investigate  the 
particular  mode  of  their  existence  in  the  Divine 
Mind ;  or  to  treat  them  as  parts  of  God,  inasmuch  as 
they  are  all  included  in  the  idea  of  the  one  Indivisible 
Godhead.  And,  lastly,  subtle  and  unmeaning  ques- 
tions might  be  raised  about  some  of  these  ;  for 
instance,  God's  power :  whether,  that  is,  it  did  or  did 
not  exist  from  eternity,  on  the  ground,  that  bearing  a 
relation  to  things  created,  it  could  not  be  said  to  have 
existence  before  the  era  of  creation '. 

^  Origen  de  Principiis,  i.  2,  §  10. 



Next,  ft  is  to  be  remarked,  that  the  Jewish  Scrip- 
hrres  introduce  to  our  notice  certain  pccuHar  Attri- 
butes or  Manifestations  (as  they  would  seem)  of  the 
Deity,    corresponding    in    some    measure    to    those 

(Jready  mentioned  as  conveyed  to  us  by  Natural 
Religion,  though  of  a  more  obscure  character.  Such 
Pwhat  is  called  "the  Spirit  of  God  ;"  a  phrase  which 
enotes  sometimes  the  Divine  energy,  sometimes 
creative  or  preserving  power,  sometimes  the  assem- 
blage of  Divine  gifts,  moral  and  intellectual,  vouch- 
safed to  mankind ;  having  in  all  cases  a  general 
connexion  with  the  notion  of  the  vivifying  principle 
of  nature.  Such  again,  is  "  the  Wisdom  of  God," 
as  introduced  into  the  book  of  Proverbs  ;  and  such  is 
the  "Name,"  the  "  Word,"  the  "Glory,"  of  God. 

Further,  these  peculiar  Manifestations  (to  give  them 
a  name)  are  sometimes  in  the  same  elder  Scriptures 
singularly  invested  with  the  properties  of  personality  ; 
and,  although  the  expressions  of  the  sacred  text  may 
in  some  places  be  interpreted  figuratively,  yet  there 
are  passages  so  strangely  worded,  as  at  first  sight  to 
be  inconsistent  with  themselves,  and  such  as  would  be 
ascribed,  in  an  uninspired  work,  to  forgetfulness  or  in- 
accuracy in  the  writer  ; — as,  for  instance,  when  what  is 
first  called  the  Glory  of  God  is  subsequently  spoken  of 
as  an  intelligent  Agent,  often  with  the  characteristics, 
or  even  the  name  of  an  Angel.  On  the  other  hand,  it 
elsewhere  occurs,  that  what  is  introduced  as  an  Angel, 
^afterwards  described  as  God  Himself. 
pKow,  when  we  pass  on  to  the  New  Testament,  we 
these  peculiar  Manifestations  of  the  Divine 
rence  concentrated  and  fixed  in  two,  called  the 
ITord,   and   the    Spirit,      At    the    same    time,    the 

154  'The  Scripture  Doctrine      [cijap.  ii. 

apparent  Personality  ascribed  to  Them  m  the  Old 
Testament,  is  changed  for  a  real  Personality,  so 
clearly  and -explicitly  marked  as  to  resist  all  critical 
experiments  upon  the  language,  all  attempts  at  alle- 
gorical interpretation.  Here  too  the  Word  is  also 
called  the  Son  of  God,  and  appears  to  possess  such 
strict  personal  attributes,  as  to  be  able  voluntarily  to 
descend  from  heaven,  and  assume  our  nature  without 
ceasing  to  be  identically  what  He  was  before  ;  so  as 
to  speak  of  Himself,  though  a  man,  as  one  and  the 
same  with  the  Divine  Word  who  existed  in  the 
beginning.  The  Personality  of  the  Spirit  in  some 
true  and  sufficient  sense  is  as  accurately  revealed  ;  and 
that  the  Son  is  not  the  Spirit,  is  also  evident  from  the 
fixed  relations  which  are  described  as  separating 
Them  from  each  other  in  the  Divine  Essence. 

Reviewing  this  process  of  revelation,  Gregory  Nazi- 
anzen,  somewhat  after  the  manner  of  the  foregoing 
account,  remarks  that,  as  Almighty  God  has  in  the 
course  of  His  dispensations  changed  the  ritual  of 
religion  by  successive  abrogations,  so  He  has  changed 
its  theology  by  continual  additions  till  it  has  come  to 
perfection,  "  Under  the  Old  Dispensation,"  he  pro- 
ceeds, "  the  Father  was  openly  revealed,  and  the  Son 
but  obscurely.  When  the  New  was  given,  the  Son 
was  manifested,  but  the  Divinity  of  the  Spirit  inti- 
mated only.  Now  the  Spirit  dwells  with  us,  affording 
us  clearer  evidence  about  Himself,  .  .  .  that  by  gradual 
additions,  and  flights,  as  David  says,  and  by  advanc- 
ing and  progressing  from  glory  to  glory,  the  radiance 
of  the  Trinity  might  shine  out  on  those  who  are 
illuminated  2." 

•  Greg.  Naz.  Orat.  xxxvii.  p.  608 ;  [xxxi.  36,] 




Now  from  this  peculiar  method  in  which  the 
doctrine  is  unfolded  to  us  in  Scripture,  we  learn  so 
much  as  this  in  our  contemplation  of  it ;  viz.  the 
absurdity,  as  well  as  the  presumption,  of  inquiring 
niinutely  about  the  actual  relations  subsisting  between 
God  and  His  Son  and  Spirit,  and  drawing  large 
inCerenccs  from  what  is  told  us  of  Them,  Whether 
ifiey  are  equal  to  Him  or  unequal,  whether  posterior 
'"  Him  in  existence  or  coeval,  such  inquiries  (though 
"ften  they  must  be  answered  when  once  started)  are 
'"  their  origin  as  superfluous  as  similar  questions  con- 
'^'■''"nLng  the  Almighty's  relation  to  His  own  attributes 
(which  still  we  answer  as  far  as  we  can,  when  asked)  ; 
for  the  Son  and  the  Spirit  are  otie  with  Him,  the  ideas 
°'  number  and  comparison  being  excluded.  Yet  this 
s'^^tement  must  be  qualified  from  the  evidence  of 
Scripture,  by  two  additional  remarks.  On  the  one 
liand,  the  Son  and  Spirit  are  represented  to  us  in  the 
Economy  of  Revelation,  as  ministering  to  God,  and 
as,  so  far,  personally  subordinate  to  Him  ;  and  on  the 
otiicr  hand,  in  spite  of  this  personal  inequality,  yet,  as 
being  partakers  of  the  fulness  of  the  Father,  they  are 
equal  to  Him  in  nature,  and  in  Their  claims  upon  our 
faith  and  obedience,  as  is  sufficiently  proved  by  the 
form  of  baptism.  — , 

The  mysteriousness  of  the  doctrine  evidently  lies  \ 
in  our  inability  to  conceive  a  sense  of  the  word  person, 
such,  as  to  be  more  than  a  mere  character,  yet  less 
than  an  individual  intelligent  being ;  our  own  notions, 
as  gathered  from  our  experience  of  human  agents, 
leading  us  to  consider  personality  as  equivalent,  in  itsr 

Eidea,   to   the   unity   and    independence   of  thej 
aterial  substance  of  which  it  is  predicated,  J 




This  being  the  general  Scripture  view  of  the  Holy 
Trinity,  it  follows  to  describe  the  Ecclesiastical  Doc- 
trine, chiefly  in  relation  to  our  Lord,  as  contained  in 
the  writings  of  the  Fathers,  especially  the  Ante- 

Scripture  is  express  in  declaring  both  the  divinity 
of  Him  who  in  due  time  became  man  for  us,  and  also 
His  personal  distinction  from  God  in  His  pre-existent 
state.  This  is  sufficiently  clear  from  the  opening  of 
St  John's  Gospel,  which  states  the  mystery  as  dis- 
tinctly as  an  ecclesiastical  comment  can  propound  it 
On  these  two  truths  the  whole  doctrine  turns,  viz. 
that  our  Lord  is  one  with,  yet  personally  separate 
from  God.  Now  there  are  two  appellations  given  to 
Him  in  Scripture,  enforcing  respectively  these  two 
essentials  of  the  true  doctrine  ;  appellations  imperfect 
and  open  to  misconception  by  themselves,  but  quali- 
fying and  completing  each  other.     The  title  of  the 

^  The  examples  cited  are  principally  borrowed  from  the  elaborate 
catalogues  furnished  by  Petavius,  Bishop  Bull,  and  Suicer,  in  his  The* 
saurus  and  his  Comment  on  the  Nicene  Creed. 

SECT.  III.]  of  tlie  Trinity.  157 

Son  marks  His  derivation  and  distinction  from  the 
Father,  that  of  the  Word  (i.e.  Reason)  denotes  His 
inseparable  inherence  in  the  Divine  Unity  ;  and  while 
the  former  taken  by  itself,  might  lead  the  mind  to  con- 
ceive of  Him  as  a  second  being,  and  the  latter  as  no 
real  being  at  all,  both  together  witness  to  the  mystery, 
that  He  is  at  once  from^  and  yet  /;/,  the  Immaterial, 
incomprehensible  God.     Whether  or  not  these  titles 
contain  the   proof  of  this   statement,    (which,   it   is 
presumed,  they  actually  do,)  at  least,  they  will  enable 
us  to  classify  our  ideas :  and  we  have  authority  for 
^o  using  them.     "  The  Son,"  says  Athanasius,  "  is  the 
Word  and  Wisdom  of  the  Father  :  from  which  titles 
^^  infer  His  impassive  and  indivisible  derivation  from 
the  Father,  inasmuch  as  the  word  (or  reason)  of  a 
'^an  is  no  mere  part  of  him,  nor  when  exercised,  goes 
^orth  from  him  by  a  passion  ;  much  less,  therefore,  is 
it  so  with  the  Word  of  God.     On  the  other  hand,  the 
■P'ather  calls  Him  His  Son,  lest,  from  hearing  only 
that  He  was  the  Word,  we  should  consider  Him  such 
^s  the  word  of  man,  impersonal,  whereas  the  title  of 
Son,  designates  Him  as  a  Word  which  exists,  and  a 
substantial  Wisdom 2." 

A. vailing  ourselves  of  this  division,  let  us  first  dwell 
on  the  appellation  of  Son,  and  then  on  that  of  Word 
or  Reason. 
•>    _  — 

Athan.  dc  Syn.  41. 

''i   Uic  same  way  the  Semi-Arian  Basil  (of  Ancyra),  sj  caking  of  such 

eretics  as  argued   that  the  Son  has  no  existence  separate  from  the 

^'ner,  because  He  is  called  the  Word,  sayp,  "  For  this  reason  our  prcde- 

^^""s,  in  order  to  signify  that  the  Son  has  a  reality,  and  is  in  being,  and 

^   tnere  word  which  comes  and  goes,  were  obliged  to  call  Him  a 

-  ^^^nce.  .  »  .  For  a  word  has  no  real  existence,  and  cannot  be  a  Son 

^^>  else  were  there  many  sons.**     Ep*ph.  Hxr.  Ixxiii.  i3. 

158  The  Ecclesiastical  Doctrine' \ciiA\\  il 


Nothing  can  be  plainer  to  the  attentive  student  of 
Scripture,  than  that  our  Lord  is  there  called  the  Son 
of  God,  not  only  in  respect  of  His  human  nature,  but 
of  His  pre-existent  state  also.  And  if  this  be  so,  the 
very  fact  of  the  revelation  of  Him  as  such,  implies 
that  we  are  to  gather  something  from  it,  and  attach  in 
consequence  of  it  some  ideas  to  our  notion  of  Him, 
which  otherwise  we  should  not  have  attached ;  else 
would  it  not  have  been  made.  Taking  then  the  word 
in  its  most  vague  sense,  so  as  to  admit  as  little  risk  as 
possible  of  forcing  the  analogy,  we  seem  to  gain  the 
notion  of  derivation  from  God,  and  therefore,  of  the 
utter  dissimilarity  and  distance  existing  between 
Him  and  all  beings  except  God  His  Father,  as  if  He 
partook  of  that  unapproachable,  incommunicable 
Divine  Nature,  which  is  increate  and  imperishable. 

But  Scripture  does  not  leave  us  here  :  in  order  to 
fix  us  in  this  view,  lest  we  should  be  perplexed  with 
another  notion  of  the  analogy,  derived  from  that 
adopted  sonship,  which  is  ascribed  therein  to  created 
beings,  it  attaches  a  characteristic  epithet  to  His 
Name,  as  descriptive  of  the  peculiar  relation  of  Him 
who  bears  it  to  the  Father.  It  designates  Him  as  the 
Oniy-begotteii  or  the  own'^  Son  of  God,  terms  evidently 
referring,  where  they  occur,  to  His  heavenly  nature, 
and  thus  becoming  the  inspired  comment  on  the  more 
general  title.  It  is  true  that  the  term  generation  is 
also  applied  to  certain  events  in  our  Lord's  media- 
torial history:  to  His  resurrection  from  the  dead^; 

•  [John  i.  I.  14.  18;    iU.  16;  v.  18.     Rom.  viii.  32.     Heb.  i.  1 — 14.] 

♦  Ps.  ii.  7.    Acts  xiii  33.    Heb.  v.  5.    Rev.  i.  5.     Rom.  i.  4. 

SWr.  m,]  of  ih  Trinity. 

and,accordingto  theFathcrsS,  to  His  original  r 
in  the  beginning  of  all  things  to  create  the  world  ;  and 
to  His  manifestation  in  the  flesh.  Still,  granting  this, 
tie  sense  of  the  word  "  oniy-begotten "  remains, 
defined  by  its  context  to  relate  to  something  higher 
than  any  event  occurring  in  time,  however  great  or 
beneficiaJ  to  the  human  race. 

Being  taken  then,  as  it  needs  must  be  taken,  to 
designate  His  original  nature,  it  witnesses  most 
forcibly  and  impressively  to  that  which  is  peculiar  in 
it,  viz.  His  origination  from  God,  and  such  as  to 
exclude  all  resemblance  to  any  being  but  Him,  whom 
nothing  created  resembles.  Tiius,  without  irreverently 
and  idiy  speculating  upon  the  generation  in  itself,  but 
considering  the  doctrine  as  given  us  as  a  practical 
direction  for  our  worship  and  obedience,  we  may 
accept  it  in  token,  that  whatever  the  Father  is,  such  is 
the  Son.  And  there  are  some  remarkable  texts  in 
Scripture  corroborative  of  this  view :  for  instance,  that 
in  the  fifth  chapter  of  St.  John,  "  As  the  Father  hath 
life  in  Himself,  so  hath  He  given  to  the  Son  to  have 
life  in  Himself.  .  What  things  soever  the  Father 
docth,  these  also  doetli  the  Son  likewise.  For  the 
Father  loveth  the  Son,  and  showeth  Him  all  things 
that  Himself  doc-th.  .  As  the  Father  raiseth  up  the 
dead  and  quickcncth  them,  even  so  the  Son  quickeneth 
whom  He  will  .  .  that  all  men  should  honour  the  Son 
even  as  they  honour  the  Father.  He  that  honoureth 
not  the  Son,  honoureth  not  the  Father  which  hath 
sent  Him." 

This  is  the  principle  of  interpretation  acknowledged 
by  the  primitive  CJiurch.     Its  teachers  warn  us  against 

*  Bull,  DefdU.  P[(!.  Nic.  ill.  9,  {  ii. 

1 60  The  Ecclesiastical  Doctrine  [chap.  ll. 

resting  in  the  word  "generation,"  they  urge  us  on  to 
seize  and  use  its  practical  meaning.  "  Speculate  not 
upon  the  divine  generation  (gennesisX*  says  Gregory 
Nazianzen,  "  for  it  is  not  safe  ....  let  the  doctrine 
be  honoured  silently ;  it  is  a  great  thing  for  thee  to 
know  the  fact ;  the  mode,  we  cannot  admit  that  even 
Angels  understand,  much  less  thou  6."  Basil  says, 
"Seek  not  what  is  undiscoverable,  for  you  will  not 
discover ;  .  .  if  you  will  not  comply,  but  are  obstinate, 
I  shall  deride  you,  or  rather  I  weep  at  your  daring : 
....  believe  what  is  written,  seek  not  what  is  not 
written  7."  Athanasius  and  Chrysostom  repel  the 
profane  inquiry  argumentatively.  "Such  specula- 
.  tors,"  the  former  says,  "  might  as  well  investigate, 
where  God  is,  and  how  God  is,  and  of  what  nature 
I  the  Father  is.  But  as  such  questions  are  irreligious, 
i  and  argue  ignorance  of  God,  so  is  it  also  unlawful  to 
\  venture  such  thoughts  about  the  generation  of  the 
i  Son  of  God."  And  Chrysostom  ;  "  I  know  that  He 
begat  the  Son  :  the  manner  how,  I  am  ignorant  of.  I 
know  that  the  Holy  Spirit  is  from  Him  ;  how  from 
Him,  I  do  not  understand.  I  eat  food  ;  but  how  this 
is  converted  into  my  flesh  and  blood,  I  know  not 
We  know  not  these  things,  which  we  see  every  day 
when  we  eat,  yet  we  meddle  with  inquiries  concerning 
the  substance  of  God  8." 

While  they  thus  prohibited  speculation,  they  boldly 
used  the  doctrine  for  the  purposes  for  which  it  was 
given  them  in  Scripture.  Thus  Justin  Martyr  speaks 
of  Christ  as  the  Son,  "  who  alone  is  literally  called  by 
that  name :"  and  arguing  with  the  heathen,  he  says, 

*  Greg.  Naz.  Orat.  xxxv.  39,  30  [xxix.  8]. 

7  Petav.  V.  6,  §  2.  •  Ibid. 

SHT.  ii]."j 

of  the  THnity. 


"Jfsus  might  well  deserve  from  His  wisdom  to  be 
called  the  Son  of  God,  though  He  were  only  a  man 
lite  others,  for  all  writers  speak  of  God  as  the  '  Father 
of  both  men  and  gods.'  But  let  it  not  be  strange  to 
ynu,  if.  besides  this  common  generation,  we  consider 
/lim,  as  the  Word  of  God,  to  have  been  begotten  of 
God  in  a  special  way^."'  Eusebius  of  C:esarea,  unsatis- 
factory as  he  is  as  an  authority,  has  nevertheless 
well  expressed  the  general  Catholic  view  in  his  attack 
upon  Marcellus.  "  He  M*ho  describes  the  Son  as  a 
creature  made  out  of  nothing,"  he  says,  "does  not 
observe  that  he  is  bestowing  on  Him  only  the  name 
of  Son,  and  denying  Him  to  be  really  such  ;  for  He 
who  has  come  out  of  nothing,  cannot  truly  be  the 
Son  of  God,  more  than  other  things  which  are  made. 
But  He  who  is  truly  the  Son,  born  from  God,  as  from 
a  Father,  He  may  reasonably  be  called  the  singularly 
beloved  and  only-begotten  of  the  Father,  and  therefore 
He  is  Himself  God '."  This  last  inference,  that  what  is 
bom  of  God,  is  God,  of  course  implicitlyappeals  to,  and 
is  supported  by,  the  numerous  texts  which  expressly 
call  the  Son  God,  and  ascribe  to  Him  the  divine 
attributes '. 

•  Bull,  Defciis.  ii.  4,  {  i.  [The  sentence  nins  on  tlius  :— TOis  toi- 
'Ep/i^  Kuyov  rui-  irapis.  6eoC  dyytXTtKciv  \frjovmv.     Apol.  i.  12.] 

'  Eustb.  de  Eccic5.  ThcoL  i.  9,  10. 

*  The  follawing  are  additional  specimens  from  prlmiliyc  theology, 
Clcmcni  calls  the  Son  "  the  perfect  Woid,  born  of  Ihc  pfifttt  Kaihcr." 
Tfftullian,  afkr  quoting  the  text,  "  All  that  the  Father  halh  are  Mine," 
a^U^  "If  so,  Khj-  should  not  the  Fathei's  titlss  be  His?  When  then 
we  read  that  God  is  .Almighty,  and  the  Highest,  and  the  God  of  Host', 
mnd  the  King  of  Isiacl,  and  Jehovah,  see  to  it  whether  the  Son  also  benoi 
■ignificd  by  these  passagcf,  as  being  in  His  own  right  itie  Almighi;- 
Cod,  inasmuch  as  lie  is  the  Word  of  the  Almiglity  Co.!.''  tull,  DdLii». 
".6.  »3-7.t4- 


1 62  The  Ecclesiastical  Doctrine  [chap,  ii. 

The  reverential  spirit  in  which  the  fathers  held  the 
doctrine  of  the  gennesis^  led  them  to  the  use  of  other 
forms  of  expression,  partly  taken  from  Scripture, 
partly  not,  with  a  view  of  signifying  the  fact  of  the 
Son's  full  participation  in  the  divinity  of  Him  who  is 
His  Father,  without  dwelling  on  the  mode  of  partici- 
pation or  origination,  on  which  they  dared  not  specu- 
late 3.  Such  were  the  images  of  the  sun  and  its 
radiance,  the  fountain  and  the  stream,  the  root  and 
its  shoots,  a  body  and  its  exhalation,  fire  and  the  fire 
kindled  from  it ;  all  which  were  used  as  emblems  of 
the  sacred  mystery  in  those  points  in  which  it  was 
declared  in  Scripture,  viz.  the  mystery  of  the  Son's 
being  from  the  Father  and,  as  such,  partaker  in  His 
Divine  perfections.  The  first  of  these  is  found  in  the 
first  chapter  of  the  Epistle  to  the  Hebrews,  where 
our  Lord  is  called,  "  the  brightness  of  God's  glory.*' 
These  illustrations  had  a  further  use  in  their  very 
variety,  as  reminding  the  Christian  that  he  must  not 
dwell  on  any  one  of  them  for  its  own  sake.  The 
following  passage  from  TertuUian  will  show  how  they 
were  applied  in  the  inculcation  of  the  sacred  doctrine. 
"  Even  when  a  ray  is  shot  forth  from  the  sun,  though 
it  be  but  a  part  from  the  whole,  yet  the  sun  is  in  the 
ray,  inasmuch  as  it  is  the  ray  of  the  sun ;  nor  is  its 
substance  separated,  but  drawn  out.  In  like  manner 
there  is  Spirit  from  Spirit,  and  God  from  God.  As 
when  a  light  is  kindled  from  another,  the  original 
light  remains  entire  and  undiminished,  though  you 
borrow  from  it  many  like  itself ;  so  That  which  pro- 
ceeds from  God,  is  called  at  once  God,  and  the  Son  of 
God,  and  Both  are  One^. " 

'  Vtd  Athan.  ad  Serap.  i.  20.  *  Bull,  Defens.  ii.  7,  (  a* 

SECT,  in.]  of  the  Trinity. 

So  much  is  evidently  deducible  from  what  Scripture 
tells  us  concerning  the  generation  of  the  Son ;  that 
there  is,  (so  to  express  it,)  a  reiteration  of  the  One 
Infinite  Nature  of  God,  a  communicated  divinity,  in 
the  Person  of  our  Lord ;  an  inference  supported  by 
the  force  of  the  word  "  only  begotten,"  and  verified 
by  the  freedom  and  fulness  with  which  the  Apostles 
ascribe  to  Christ  the  high  incommunicable  titles  of 
eternal  perfection  and  glory.  There  is  one  other 
notion  conveyed  to  us  in  the  doctrine,  which  must  be 
evident  as  soon  as  stated,  little  as  may  be  the  practical 
usefulness  of  dwelling  upon  it.  The  very  name  of  Son, 
and  the  very  idea  of  derivation,  imply  a  certain  sub- 
ordination of  the  Son  to  the  Father,  so  far  forth  as  we 
view  Him  as  distinct  from  the  Father,  or  in  His 
personality :  and  frequent  testimony  is  borne  to  the 
correctness  of  this  inference  in  Scripture,  as  in  the 
descriptions  of  the  Divine  Angel  in  the  Old  Testa- 
ment, revived  in  the  closing  revelations  of  the  New^  ; 
and  in  such  passages  as  that  above  cited  from  St. 
John's  Gospel^.  This  is  a  truth  which  every  Christian 
feels,  admits,  and  acts  upon  ;  but  from  piety  he  wOuld 
not  allow  himself  to  reflect  on  what  he  does,  did  not 
the  attack  of  heresies  oblige  him.  The  direct  answer 
which  a  true  religious  loyalty  leads  him  to  make  to 
any  question  about  the  subordination  of  the  Son,  is 
that  such  comparisons  arc  irreverent,  that  the  Son  is 
«ne  with  the  Father,  and  that  unless  he  honours  the 
Son  in  all  the  fulness  of  honour  which  he  ascribes  to 
the  Father,  he  is  disobeying  His  express  command. 
It  may  serve  as  a  very  faint  illustration  of  the  offence 
given  him,  to  consider  the  manner  in  which  he  would 

^H      given  him 

164  The  Ecclesiastical  Doctrine    [chap.  il. 

receive  any  question  concerning  the  love  which  he 
feels  respectively  for  two  intimate  friends,  or  for  a 
brother  and  sister,  or  for  his  parents  :  though  in  such 
cases  the  impropriety  of  the  inquiry,  arises  from  the 
incommensurableness,  not  the  coincidence,  of  the 
respective  feelings.  But  false  doctrine  forces  us  to 
analyze  our  own  notions,  in  order  to  exclude  it 
Arius  argued  that,  since  our  Lord  was  a  Son,  there- 
fore He  was  not  God  :  and  from  that  time  we  have 
been  obliged  to  determine  how  much  we  grant  and 
what  we  deny,  lest,  while  praying  without  watching, 
we  lose  all.  Accordingly,  orthodox  theology  has 
since  his  time  worn  a  different  aspect ;  first,  inasmuch 
as  divines  have  measured  what  they  said  themselves  ; 
secondly,  inasmuch  as  they  have  measured  the  Ante- 
Nicene  language,  which  by  its  authors  was  spoken 
from  the  heart,  by  the  necessities  of  controversies  of  a 
later  date.  And  thus  those  early  teachers  have  been 
made  appear  technical,  when  in  fact  they  have  only 
been  reduced  to  system  ;  just  as  in  literature  what  is 
composed  freely,  is  aftenvards  subjected  to  the  rules 
of  grammarians  and  critics.  This  must  be  taken  as 
an  apology  for  whatever  there  is  that  sounds  harsh  in 
the  observations  which  I  have  now  to  make,  and  for 
^  the  injustice  which  I  may  seem  incidentally  to  do  in 
the  course  of  them  to  the  ancient  writers  whose  words 
are  in  question. 

"  The  Catholic  doctors,"  says  Bishop  Bull, "  both  be- 
fore  and  after  the  Nicene  Council,  are  unanimous  in 
declaring  that  the  Father  is  greater  than  the  Son,  even 
as  to  divinity  [paternity  ?]  ;  i.  e.  not  in  nature  or  any 
essential  perfection,  which  is  in  the  Father  and  not  in 
Son,  but  alone  in  what  may  be  called  authority. 


that  is  in  point  of  origin,  since  the  Son  is  from  the 
Father,  not  the  Father  from  the  Son^."  Justin,  for 
instance,  speaks  of  the  Son  as  "  having  the  second 
place  after  the  unchangeable  and  everlasting  God  and 
Fatlier  of  all."  Origen  says  that  "the  Son  is'  not 
nnore  powerful  than  the  Father,  but  subordinate 
(tnro5eitj-Tepov)  ;  according  to  His  own  words,  'The 
Father  that  sent  Mc.  is  greater  than  I.'"  This  text  is 
dted  in  proof  of  the  same  doctrine  by  the  Nicene, 
Post-Nicene  Fathers,  Alexander,  Athanasius, 
;il,  Gregory  Nazianzen,  Chrysostom,  Cyril,  and 
others,  of  whom  we  may  content  ourselves  with  the 
words  of  Basil  :  "  '  My  Father  is  greater  than  I,'  that 
is,  so  far  forth  as  I'ather,  since  what  else  docs  '  Fa- 
ther' signify,  than  that  He  is  cause  and  origin  of  Him 
who  was  begotten  by  Him  f "  and  in  another  place, 

'  Bull,  Delens.  i 

cl  propne 

Or,  again,  10  lake  the 

ni  Palre  divmitattm  h; 

dlflert.     Pioinde  Filietas  ipsa   Palcrnitat  eqiiDtlanim 

ins,  qua  Filius,  Paire,  ut  Paici  est,  minor  dicitur,  quoniain  origine  est 
ion  aultm  ul  Dtus,"  ii.  i,  §  i^.]  Cudworih,  loo,  nbseiresi 
himself,  eipnunding  ihc  Aihanasian  creed,  wiilcth  in  this 
The  Father  is  in  a  right  Catholic  manner  affirmed  l>y  most  of 
die  ancients,  to  be  greater  than  the  Son,  and  He  is  commonly  said  also, 
irilhoin  reprehension,  to  be  before  Him  in  respect  of  original.'  Whcre- 
npon  he  cooeludeth  the  true  meaning  of  that  Creed  to  be  this,  that  no 
Fenon  of  the  Trinity  is  greater  or  less  than  other  in  respect  of  the  essence 

oflheGodhtad  common  10  them  all but  that  notwilhsianding 

there  may  be  some  inequality  in  them,  as  they  are  Hie  Deus  et  I  lac 
fosona.  Wherefore  when  Athanasius,  and  the  other  orthodoi  Fathers, 
■riling  against  Atius,  do  bo  frequently  assert  the  equality  of  all  the  Three 
Persons,  this  is  id  be  understood  in  way  of  opposition  ta  Arius  only,  who 

mode  tba  Son  to  be  unequal  id  the  Father,  as  crcpoowios one 

beiiig  God,  and  the  other  a,  creature ;  they  afflrniing  on  the  contrary, 
equal  to  the  Father,  as  d/iooimTIos  ....  thai  is,  as  Gaf, 
Cain.  InCelL  Syst  4,  {  36. 

1 66  The  Ecclesiastical  Doctrine   [chap.  ii. 

"  The  Son  is  second  in  order  to  the  Father,  since  He 
is  from  Him  ;  and  in  dignity,  inasmuch  as  the  Father 
is  the  origin  and  cause  of  His  existence  8" 

Accordingly,  the  primitive  writers,  with  an  unsuspi- 
cious" yet  reverent  explicitness,  take  for  granted  the 
ministrative  character  of  the  relation  of  both  Son  and 
Spirit  towards  the  Father  ;  still  of  course  speaking  of 
Them  as  included  in  the  Divine  Unity,  not  as  external 
to  it.     Thus  Irenaeus,  clear  and  undeniable  as  is  his 
orthodoxy,  still  declares,  that  the  Father  "  is  minis- 
tered  to   in   all  things  by  His  own   Offspring   and 
Likeness,  the  Son  and  Holy  Ghost,  the  Word  and 
Wisdom,  of  whom  all  angels  are  servants  and  sub- 
jects ^Z*      In  like  manner,  a  ministry  is   commonly 
ascribed  to  the  Son  and  Spirit,  and  a  bidding  and 
willing  to  the  Father,  by  Justin,  Irenaeus,   Clement, 
Origen,  and  Methodius',  altogether  in  the  spirit  of  the 
Post-Nicene  authorities  already  cited :    and  without 
any  risk  of  misleading  the  reader,   as  soon  as   the 
second  and  third  Persons  are  understood  to  be  internal 
to  the  Divine  Mind,  connaUiralia  instrumental  con- 
current (at  the  utmost)  in  no  stronger  sense,  than  when 
the   human   will  is  said  to  concur  with  the  reason. 
Gregory  Nazianzen  lays  down  the  same  doctrine  witli 
an   explanation,  in  the  following  sentence  :    "  It  is 
plain,"  he  says,  "  that  the  things,  of  which  the  Father 
designs  in  Him  the  forms,  these  the  Word  executes ; 
not  as  a  servant,  nor  unskilfully,  but  with  full  know- 

*  Justin,  Apol.  i.  13. 60.     Bull,  Defens.  iv.  2,  §  6,  §  9.      Petav.  ii.  3, 

§  2,  &a 

"  Petav.  i.  3,  §  7. 

*  VTnypco-io,  fiovXrjarL^,  OtXrjfm,  praeceptio.      Petav.  ibid.  eL  scqq. 


ledge  a0(I  a  master's  power,  and,  to  speak  more 
suitably,  as  if  He  were  the  Father  2." 

Such  is  the  Scriptural  and  Catholic  sense  of  the 
word  Son  ;  on  the  other  hand,  it  is  easy  to  see  what 
was  the  defect  of  this  image,  and  the  consequent 
danger  in  the  use  of  it.  First,  there  was  an  appear- 
ance of  materiality,  the  more  suspiciously  to  be  viewed 
because  there  were  heresies  at  the  time  which  denied 
or  neglected  the  spiritual  nature  of  Almighty  God. 
Next,  too  marked  a  distinction  seemed  to  be  drawn 
between  the  Father  and  Son,  tending  to  give  a  separate 
individuality  to  each,  and  so  to  introduce  a  kind  of 
,<litheism  ;  and  here  too  heresy  and  philosophy  had 
prepared  the  way  for  the  introduction  of  the  error. 
The  Valeiitinians  and  Manichees  are  chargeable  with 
both  misconceptions.  The  Eclectics,  with  the  latter; 
being  Emanatists,  they  seem  to  have  considered  the 
Son  to  be  both  individually  distinct  from  the  Father, 
and  of  an  inferior  nature. — Against  these  errors  we 
have  the  following  among  other  protests. 

TertulHail  says,  "  We  declare  that  two  are  revealed 
'as  God  in  Scripture,  two  as  Lord ;  but  we  explain 
ourselves,  lest  offence  should  be  taken.  They  are  not 
called  two,  in  respect  of  their  both  being  God,  or 
Lord,  but  in  respect  of  their  being  Father  and  Son  ; 
and  this  moreover,  not  from  any  division  of  substance, 
but  from  mutual  relation,  since  we  pronounce  the  Son 
:o  be  individual  with  and  inseparable  from  the  Fa- 
Origen  also,   commenting  upon   the  word 

I  Boll,  Dcfcns.  ii.  ].;.  {10.      IGng.  Oiat.  xxx.  11.    Foe  the  suboiiii- 
n  of  intdialorsbi]!,  viil.  Ailian.  Oral.  iv.  6,] 
Bull.  Defrns,  ii.  4,f,).7.  5  5-     Pelav.  i.4,il. 

1 68  The  Ecclesiastical  Doctrine    [chap.  ii. 

"brightness^,"  in  the  first  chapter  of  the  Hebrews, 
says,  "  Holy  Scripture  endeavours  to  give  to  men  a 
refined  perception  of  its  teaching,  by  introducing  the 
illustration  of  breath  5.  It  has  selected  this  material 
image,  in  order  to  our  understanding  evien  in  some 
degree,  how  Christ,  who  is  Wisdom,  issues,  as  though 
Breath,  from  the  perfection  of  God  Himself.  ....  In 
like  manner  from  the  analogy  of  material  objects,  He 
is  called  a  pure  and  perfect  Emanation  of  the 
Almighty  glory^.  Both  these  resemblances  most 
clearly  show  the  fellowship  of  nature  between  the 
Son  and  Father.  For  an  emanation  seems  to  be  of 
one  substance  with  that  body  of  which  it  is  the 
emanation  or  breath  7."  And  to  guard  still  more 
strongly  against  any  misconception  of  the  real  drift 
of  the  illustration,  he  cautions  his  readers  against 
"those  absurd  fictions  which  give  the  notion  of 
certain  literal  extensions  in  the  Divine  Nature;  as 
if  they  would  distribute  it  into  parts,  and  divide 
God  the  Father,  if  they  could ;  whereas  to  entertain 
even  the  light  suspicion  of  this,  is  not  only  an  extreme 
impiety,  but  an  utter  folly  also,  nay  not  even  intelli- 

*  airavyao'iw.. 

*  arfiLS*  Wisd.  vii.  25. 

*  SLTToppouLf  ibid. 

'  In  like  manner  Justin,  after  saying  that  the  Divine  Power  called  the 
Word  is  bom  from  the  Father,  adds,  "  but  not  by  separation  from  Him 
(kot  aTTOTOfiijy)  as  if  the  Father  lost  part  of  Himself,  as  corporeal  sub- 
stances are  not  the  same  before  and  after  separation."  [Tryph.  1 28.] 
"The  Son  of  God,**  says  Clement,  "never  relinquishes  His  place  of 
vratch,  not  parted  or  separated  off,  not  passing  from  place  to  place,  but 
always  every  where,  illimitable,  all  intellect,  all  the  light  of  the  Father, 
all  eye,  all-seeing,  all-hearing,  all-knowing,  searching  the  powers  with 
His  power."     [Strom,  vii.  a.] 

gihle  at  all,  that  an  incorporeal  nature   should    be 
rapable  of  division^." 

To  meet  more  fullj  this  misconception  to  which 
the  word  Sen  gave  rise,  the  ancient  Fathers  availed 
themselves  of  the  other  chief  appellation  given  to  our 
Lord  in  Scripture.  The  Logos  or  Sophia,  the  Word, 
Reason,  or  Wisdom  of  God,  is  only  by  St.  John  dis- 
tinctly applied  to  Christ ;  but  both  before  his  time 
and  by  his  contemporarj^  Apostles  it  is  used  in  that 
ambiguous  sense,  half  literal,  half  evangelical,  which, 
when  it  is  once  known  to  belong  to  our  Lord,  guides 
us  to  the  right  interpretation  of  the  metaphor.  For 
instance,  when  St.  Paul  declares  that  "the  Word  of 
God  is  alive  and  active,  and  keener  than  a  two-edged 
sword,  and  so  piercing  as  to  separate  soul  and  spirit, 
joints  and  nerves,  and  a  judge  of  our  thoughts  and 
designs,  and  a  witness  of  every  creature,"  it  is  scarcely 
possible  to  decide  whether  the  revealed  law  of  God  be 
spoken  of,  or  the  Eternal  Son.  On  the  whole  it 
would  appear  that  our  Lord  is  called  the  Word  or 
Wisdom  of  God  in  two  respects;  first,  to  denote  His 
essential  presence  in  the  Father,  in  as  full  a  sense  as 
the  attribute  of  wisdom  is  essential  to  Him  ;  secondly. 
His  mediatorship,  as  the  Interpreter  or  Word  between 
God  and  His  creatures.  No  appellation,  surely,  could 
have  been  more  appositely  bestowed,  in  order  to 
counteract  the  notions  of  materiality  and  of  distinct 
individuahty,  and  of  beginning  of  existence,  which  the 
title  of  the  Son  was  likely  to  introduce  into  the 
Jiolic    doctrine.       Accordingly,   after    tlie    words 

^^^Jatholic   dot 

hi  >9> 

1 70  Tfie  Ecclesiastical  Doctrine  [chap.  ii. 

lately  cited,  Origen  uses  it  (or  a  metaphor  like  it)  for 
this  vtry  purpose.      Having   mentioned   the  absurd 
idea,  which  had  prevailed,  of  parts  or  extensions  in 
the  Divine  Nature,  he  proceeds  :    "  Rather,  as  will 
proceeds  out  of  the  mind,  and  neither  tears  the  mind, 
nor  is  itself  separated  or  divided  from  it,  in  some  such 
manner  must  we  conceive  that  the  Father  has  be- 
gotten the  Son,  who  is  His  Image."     Elsewhere  he 
says,  "  It  were  impious  and  perilous,  merely  because 
our  intellect  is  weak,  to  deprive  God,  as  far  as  our 
words  go,  of  His  only-begotten  co-eternal  Word,  viz. 
the  'wisdom  in  which  He  rejoiced.*     We  might  as 
well   conceive   that  He  was  not   for  ever  in  joy^" 
Hence  it  was   usual   to   declare   that   to    deny   the 
eternity  of  our   Lord   was   all   one  as  saying  that 
Almighty   God  was  once  without   intelligence ' :  for 
instance,  Athenagoras  says,  that  the  Son  is  "  the  first- 
bom  of  the  Father ;  not  as  made,  for  God  being  Mind 
Eternal,  had  from  the  beginning  reason  in  Himself, 
being  eternally  intellectual ;  but  as  issuing  forth  upon 
the  chaotic  mass  as  the  Idea  and  Agent  of  Creation^. " 
The  same  interpretation  of  the  sacred  figure  is  con- 
tinued after  the  Nicene  Council ;  thus  Basil  says,  "  If 
Christ  be  the  Power  of  God,  and  the  Wisdom,  and 
these  be  increate  and  co-eternal  with  God,  (for  He 
never  was  without  wisdom  and  power,)  then,  Christ 
is  increate  and  co-eternal  with  God  3." 

But  here  again  the  metaphor  was  necessarily  imper- 

'  Bull,  Defens.  iii.  3,  §  i« 
*  oXoyos. 

-  Bull,  Defens.  iii.  5,   %  2,  rov  Ao-^or  .  .  .  /\o7tico?  ,  ,  ,  tt^ocA^oi^ 
, .  .  t8ca  Kttl  iv€py€La. 
'  Pelav.  vi.  9,  §  2. 




feet;  and,  if  pursued,  open  to  misconception.  Its 
obvious  tendency  was  to  obliterate  the  notion  of  the 
Son's  Personality,  that  is,  to  introduce  Sabellianism. 
Something  resembling  this  was  the  error  of  Paulus  of 
Samosata  and  Marcellus  :  who,  from  the  fleeting  and 
momentary  character  of  a  word  spoken,  inferred  that 
the  Divine  Word  was  but  the  temporary  manifestation 
of  God's  glory  in  the  man  Christ.  And  it  was  to 
interact  this  tendency,  that  is,  to  witness  against  it, 
,at  the  Fathers  speak  of  Him  as  the  Word  in  an 
v/>osiasu\  the  permanent,  real,  and  living  Word. 

The  above  is  a  sketch  of  the  primitive  doctrine  con- 
cerning our  Lord's  divine  nature,  as  contained  in  the 
two  chief  appellations  which  arc  ascribed  to  Him  in 
I  Scripture.  The  opposite  ideas  they  convey  may  be 
■  further  denoted  respectively  by  the  symbols  "of  God," 
I  and  "  in  GodS  ; "  as  though  He  were  so  derived  from 
I  the  simple  Unity  of  God  as  in  no  respect  to  be  divided 
for  extended  from  it,  (to  speak  metaphorically,)  but  to 
['inhere  within  that  ineffable  individuality.  Of  these 
I  two  conditions^  of  the  doctrine,  however,  the  divinity 
I  of  Christ,  and  the  unity  of  God,  the  latter  was  much 
tmore  earnestly  insisted  on  in  the  early  times.  The 
P  divinity  of  our  Lord  was,  on  the  whole,  too  plain  a 

'  jvuTMrntTos  Aoyos. 

*  Ik  Btov  and  iv  6vf. 

•  [Son  and  Word,  "  0/ Corf,"  and  "  in  Gad"  howewr,  imply  each  olher. 
"  If  not  Son,  neilher  is  He  Word :  if  not  Word,  neither  is  He  Son." 
Alhan.  Oral.  i*.  14.     "The  Son's  Being,  because  of  (he  Father,  is  theic- 

n  the  Father."   Athan.  iii.  3.   "  Quia  Vetbuni  idco  I'llius,"  August. 
|lnhftkn,nt.  14,  t  5.J 

172  The  Ecclesiastical  Doctrine  [chap.  11. 

truth  to  dispute ;  but  in  proportion  as  it  was  known  to 
*he  heathen,  it  would  seem  to  them  to  involve  this  con- 
sequence,— that,  much  as  the  Christians  spoke  against 
polytheism,  still,  after  all,  they  did  admit  a  polytheism 
of  their  own  instead  of  the  Pagan.  Hence  the 
anxiety  of  the  Apologists,  while  they  assail  the 
heathen  creed  on  this  account,  to  defend  their  own 
against  a  similar  charge.  Thus  Athenagoras,  in  the 
passage  lately  referred  to,  says  ;  "  Let  no  one  ridicule 
the  notion  that  God  has  a  Son.  For  we  have  not 
such  thoughts  either  about  God  the  Father  or  about 
the  Son  as  your  poets,  who,  in  their  mythologies, 
make  the  Gods  no  better  than  men.  But  the  Son  of 
God  is  the  Word  of  the  Father  [as  Creator]  both,  in 
idea  and  in  active  power  7  ....  the  Father  and  the 
Son  being  one.  The  Son  being  in  the  Father,  and 
the  Father  in  the  Son,  in  the  unity  and  power  of  the 
Spirit,  the  Son  of  God  is  the  Mind  and  Word  of  the 
Father."  Accordingly,  the  divinity  of  the  Son  being 
assumed,  the  early  writers  are  earnest  in  protecting 
the  doctrine  of  the  Unity ;  protecting  it  both  from 
the  materialism  of  dividing  the  Godhead,  and  the 
paganism  of  separating  the  Son  and  Spirit  from  the 
Father.  And  to  this  purpose  they  made  both  the  "  of 
God,"  and  the  "in  God,"  subservient,  in  a  manner 
which  shall  now  be  shown. 

First,  the  "  in  God."  It  is  the  clear  declaration  of 
Scripture,  which  we  must  receive  without  questioning, 
that  the  Son  and  Spirit  are  in  the  one  God,  and  He 
in  Them.  There  is  that  remarkable  text  in  the  first 
chapter  of  St.  John  which  says  that  the  Son  is  "  in  the 

'  iSc^  Kttl  ev€/ry€ia,  as  at  p.  1 70. 

Sect,  hi.] 

of  the  Trinity. 


Lbosom  of  the   Father."     In  another  place  it  is  said 
[.that  "  the  Son  is  in  the  Father  and  the  Father  in  the 
»iiSon."     (John  xiv.  11.)     And  elsewhere  the  Spirit  of 
God  is  compared  to  "  the  spirit  of  a  man  which  is  in 
him"  (i    Cor.  ii.   11).      This  is,   in  the  language  of 
theology,  the  doctrine  of  ih-Gcoinheretice^  ;  which  was 
used   from   the   earliest   times   on   the    authority  of 
L  Scripture,  as  a  safeguard  and  witness  of  the  Divine 
t  Unity.     A  passage  from  Athenagoras  to  this  purpose 
^.lias  just  been  cited.     Clement  has  the  following  dox- 
ology   at  the  end  of  his   Christian  Instructor.     "To 
the  One  Only  Father  and  Son,  Son  and  Father,  Son 
our  guide  and  teacher,  with  the  Holy  Spirit  also,  to 
the  One  in  all  things,  in  whom  are  all  things,  &c.  . . . 
I  to   Him  is  the  glory,   &c."     And  Gregory  of  Neo- 
ctEsarea,  if  the  words  form  part  of  his  creed,  "  In  the 
Trinity  there  is  nothing  created,  nothing  subservient, 
nothing  of  foreign  nature,  as  if  absent  from  it  once, 
and   afterwards   added.      The   Son  never  failed   the 
Father,  nor  the  Spirit  the  Son,  but  the  Trinity  remains 
[*  evermore  unchangeable,  unalterable."     These  autho- 
rities belong  to  the  early  Alexandrian  School.     The 
Ante-Nicene  school  of  Rome  is  still   more  explicit. 
Dionysius  of  Rome  says,  "'  We  must  neither  distribute 
into  three  divinities  the  awful  and  divine  Unity,  nor 
diminish  the  dignity  and  transcendant  majesty  of  our 
Lord  by  the  name  of  creature,  but  we  must  believe  in 
God  the  Father  Almighty,  and  in  Christ  Jesus  Hi.s 
Son,  and  in  the  Holy  Spirit ;  and  believe  that  the 
Word  is  united  with  the  God  of  the  universe.     For 
He  sa\-5, 1  and  the  Father  are  One  ;  and,  J  am  in  tlie 

'  "'•'/I'X'iV'j'''''^* 

1 74  ^^^  Ecclesiastical  Doctrine  [chap.  ii. 

Father,  and  the  Father  in  Me.  For  thus  the  Divine 
Trinity  and  the  holy  preaching  of  the  monarchia  will 
be  preserved  9  " 

This  doctrine  of  the  coinherence^  as  protecting  the 
Unity  without  intrenching  on  the  perfections  of  the 
Son  and  Spirit,  may  even  be  called  the  characteristic 
of  Catholic  Trinitarianism  as  opposed  to  all  counter- 
feits, whether  philosophical,  Arian,  or  Oriental.  One 
Post-Nicenc  statement  of  it  shall  be  added.  "If  any 
one  truly  receive  the  Son,  says  Basil,  "he  will  find 
that  He  brings  with  him  on  one  hand  His  Father,  on 
the  other  the  Holy  Spirit.  For  neither  can  He  from 
the  Father  be  severed,  who  is  of  and  ever  in  the 
Father ;  nor  again  from  His  own  Spirit  disunited, 
who  in  It  operates  all  things.  .  .  For  we  must  not  con- 
ceive separation  or  division  in  any  way  ;  as  if  either 
the  Son  could  be  supposed  without  the  Father,  or  the 
Spirit  disunited  from  the  Son.  But  there  is  discovered 
between  them  some  ineffable  and  incomprehensible, 
both  communion  and  distinction '." 

*  Shortly  before  he  had  used  the  following  still  stronger  expressions : 
^waOai  yap  avdyKq  t<3  0cw  twv  oAcdv  tov  Ociov  Adyov  ifi<l>tXo\- 

<ap€LV  8c  T<5  0€<3  Koi  cvBuuTaxrOoL  Set  TO^Aytov  UvajfJia.  The  Ante- 
Nicene  African  school  is  as  express  as  the  Roman.  Tertullian  says, 
"  Connexus  Patris  in  Filio,  et  Filii  in  Paracleto,  tres  efficit  cohaerentes, 
qui  tres  unum  sint,  nai  unus."'  Bull,  Defens.  ii.  6,  §  4;  12,  §  i.  11  ; 
iv.  4,  12,  §  I.  II ;  iv.  4,  §  10. 

^  Petav.  iv.  16,  §  9.  The  Semi-Arian  creed,  called  Macrostichost 
drawn  up  at  Antioch  a.d.  345,  which  is  in  parts  unexceptionable  in  point 
of  orthodoxy,  contains  the  following  striking  exposition  of  the  Catholic 
notion  of  the  coinherence,  "  Though  we  affirm  the  Son  to  have  a  distinct 
existence  and  life  as  the  Father  has,  yet  we  do  not  therefore  separate  Him 
from  the  Father,  inventing  place  and  distance  between  Their  union  after 
a  corporeal  manner.  For  we  believe  that  they  are  united  without  medium 
or  mterval,  and  are  inseparable."     And  then  follow  words  to  which  our 

lECT.  III.] 

of  ike  Trinity. 

Secondly,  as  the  "  in  God  "  led  the  Fathers  to  the 
doctrine  of  the  coinkerence,  so  did  the  "  of  God  "  lead 
them  to  the  doctrine  of  the  monarchia^ ;  still,  with 
the  one  object  of  guarding  against  any  resemblance  to 
Polytheism  in  their  creed.  Even  the  heathen  had 
shown  a  disposition,  designedly  or  from  a  spontaneous 
feeling,  to  trace  all  their  deities  up  to  one  Principle  or 
arche :  as  is  evident  by  their  Theogonies^.  Much 
more  did  it  become  that  true  religion,  which  promin- 
ently put  forth  the  Unity  of  God,  jealously  to  guard 
its  language,  lest  it  should  seem  to  admit  the  exis- 
tence of  a  variety  of  original  Principles.  It  is  said  to 
have  been  the  doctrine  of  the  Marcionists  and 
Manichees,  that  there  were  three  unconnected  indepen- 
dent Beings  in  the  Divine  Nature.  Scripture  and  the 
Church  avoid  the  appearance  of  tritheism,  by  tracing 
back,  (if  we  may  so  say,)  the  infinite  perfections  of  the 
Son  ajid  Spirit  to  Him  whose  Son  and  Spirit  They 
are.  They  are,  so  to  express  it,  but  the  new  manifes- 
Ltion  and  repetition  of  the  Father ;  there  being  no 
im  for  numeration  or  comparison  between  Them, 
nor  any  resting-place  for  the  contemplating  mind,  till 
They  are  referred  to  Him  in  whom  They  centre.  On 
the  other  hand,  in  naming  the  Father,  we  imply  the 
Son  and  Spirit,  whether  They  be  named  or  not*. 
Without  this  key,  the  language  of  Scripture  is  per- 

Unguagf  is  unequal  i  oXou  jiev  tou  Harpo;  ccciTTC/n'ur^tvtrv  tov 
Ylof  oKav  St  Tov  YiQu  t^rjpTij/iivov  koX  TrpaoTref^KOTos  tijT 
riaTpi,  Koi  fiovov  rois  TrarpuioK  koXitdis  OMXTrauo/icfmr  StrjytKSn, 
Bull,  Defcns.  iv.  4,  i  9, 

^B   nor 

•  [Vid.  Athan,  Tr,  vol.  i.  pp.  i 

•  Cndw.  Intell.  Sjal.  4,  {  13. 

•  Athtn.  ftd  Senip.  i.  14. 


176  The  Ecclesiastical  Doctrine  [chap,  ii, 

plexed  in  the  extreme  5.  Hence  it  is,  that  the  Father 
is  called  "  the  only  God,"  at  a  time  when  our  Lord's 
name  is  also  mentioned,  John  xvii.  3,  I  Tim.  i.  16,  17, 
as  if  the  Son  was  but  the  reiteration  of  His  Person, 
who  is  the  Self-Existent,  and  therefore  not  to  be 
contrasted  with  Him  in  the  way  of  number.  The 
Creed,  called  the  Apostles*,  follows  this  mode  of 
stating  the  doctrine  ;  the  title  of  God  standing  in  the 
opening  against  the  Father's  name,  while  the  Son  and 
Spirit  are  introduced  as  distinct  forms  or  modes,  (so 
to  say,)  of  and  in  the  One  Eternal  Being.  The  Nicene 
Creed,  commonly  so  called,  directed  as  it  is  against 
the  impugners  both  of  the  Son's  and  of  the  Spirit's 
divinity,  nevertheless  observes  the  same  rule  even  in 
a  stricter  form,  beginning  with  a  confession  of  the 
"  One  God."  Whether  or  not  this  mode  of  speaking 
was  designed  in  Scripture  to  guard  the  doctrine  of  the 
Unity  from  all  verbal  infringement  (and  there  seems 
evidence  that  it  was  so,  as  in  i  Cor.  viii.  5,  6,)  it 
certainly  was  used  for  this  purpose  in  the  primitive 
Church.  Thus  Tertullian  says,  that  it  is  a  mistake 
"  to  suppose  that  the  number  and  arrangement  of  the 
Trinity  is  a  division  of  its  Unity ;  inasmuch  as  the 
Unity  drawing  out  the  Trinity  from  itself,  is  not 
destroyed  by  it,  but  is  subserved  6,"  Novatian,  in  like 
manner,  says,  "  God  originating  from  God,  so  as  to  be 
the  Second  Person,  yet  not  interfering  with  the 
Father's  right  to  be  called  the  one  God.     For,  had 

^  Let  I  John  v.  20  be  taken  as  an  example ;  or  again,  i  Cor.  zii.  4 — 6. 
John  xiv.  16 — 18;  xvi.  7 — 15. 

•  Again  he  says,  that  "  the  Trinity  descending  from  the  Father  by 
closely  knit  and  connected  steps,  both  is  consistent  with  the  inonarckia 
/iTnitv),  and  protects  the  economia  (revealed  difipensation}." 


not  a  birth,  then  indeed  when  compared  with  Him 
had  no  birth,  He  would  seem,  from  the  appearance 
of  equality  in  both,  to  make  two  who  were  without 
birth^,  and  therefore  two  Gods^." 

Accordingly  it  is  impossible  to  worship  One  of  the 
Divine  Persons,  without  worshipping  the  Others  also. 
In  praying  to  the  Father,  we  only  arrive  at  His  mys- 
terious presence  through  His  Son  and  Spirit;  and  in 
iraying  to    the    Son  and  Spirit,   we  are  necessarily 

irried  on  beyond  them  to  the  source  of  Godhead  from 
'hich  They  are  derived.  We  see  this  in  the  very  form 
of  many  of  the  received  addresses  to  the  Blessed 
Trinity ;  in  which,  without  intended  reference  to  the 
mediatorial  scheme,  the  Son  and  Spirit  seem,  even  in 
tile  view  of  the  Divine  Unity,  to  take  a  place  in  our 
thoughts  between  the  Father  and  His  creatures  ;  as  in 
the  ordinary  doxologies  "to  the  Father  through  the 
Son  and  by  the  Spirit,"  or  "to  the  Father  and  Son  in 
the  unity  of  the  Holy  Ghost." 

This  gives  us  an  insight  into  the  force  of  expressions, 
common  with  the  primitive  Fathers,  but  bearing,  in 

pji  nnoriginalE  i   viz.  on    i-'-hrv^jTiK  a 

Pnav.  Pnef.  g,  i.  iii. ;  ^  S.  Dlonysius  of  Alexandria  Implies  ihe 
Ajctrine,  when  he  declares!  "  We  eitend  (he  indivisible  Unity  inio 
Trinity,  and  again  we  concenliale  the  Indestructible  Tiinily  into  Ihe 
Unity."  And  Hilar}',  to  ukc  a  Post-Niccne  authoiity,  "  We  do  not 
dehact  from  the  Father.  Mis  being  the  one  God.  wheti  we  say  also  (hat 
ihr  Sot)  is  God.  For  He  ij  God  frotn  God,  one  ftoni  one ;  therefore  one 
God,  because  God  is  fruiH  Himself.  On  (he  olhrc  hatid,  the  Son  is  not 
on  that  account  Ihe  less  Cod.  because  the  Father  is  the  one  God.  For 
the  only-begotten  Son  of  God  is  not  without  bitth,  so  as  to  detiacl  from 
Ihe  Father  His  being  the  one  God,  nor  is  He  other  Ibati  God,  but  because 

Kbom  of  Gpd."     Dc  Tiin.  i.    Vide  also  Alhan.  de  Sent.  Dinnys,  17, 
Defens.  iv.  4,  %  7. 



%vapx<K,  i 

1 78       The  Ecclesiastical  Doctrine,  &c.  [chap,  il 

the  eyes  of  inconsiderate  observers,  a  refined  and 
curious  character.  They  call  the  Son,  "  God  of  God, 
Light  of  Light,"  &c.,  much  more  frequently  than 
simply  God,  in  order  to  anticipate  in  the  very  form  of 
words,  the  charge  or  the  risk  of  ditheism.  Hence, 
also,  the  illustrations  of  the  sun  and  his  rays,  &c.,  were 
in  such  repute  ;  viz.  as  containing,  not  only  a  descrip- 
tion, but  also  a  defence  of  the  Catholic  doctrine. 
Thus  Hippolytus  says,  "  When  I  say  that  the  Son  is 
distinct  from  the  Father,  I  do  not  speak  of  two  Gods ; 
but,  as  it  were,  light  of  light,  and  the  stream  from  the 
fountain,  and  a  ray  from  the  sun  9."  It  was  the  same 
reason  which  led  the  Fathers  to  insist  upon  the  doc- 
trine of  the  divine  generation. 

•  Bull»  Defens.  iv.  4,  {> 



Variations  in  the  ante-nicene  theological 

There  will,  of  course,  be  differences  of  opinion,  in 
(deciding  how  much  of  the  ecclesiastical  doctrine,  as 
above  described,  was  derived  from  direct  Apostolical 
Tradition,  and  how  much  was  the  result  of  intuitive 
spiritual  perception  in  scripturally  informed  and 
deeply  religious  minds.  Yet  it  does  not  seem  too 
"lucii  to  affirm,  that  copious  as  it  may  be  in  theo- 
'ogical  terms,  yet  hardly  one  can  be  pointed  out 
"^^'hich  is  not  found  or  strictly  implied  in  the  New 
■*  ^stament  itseif.     And  indeed  so  much  perhaps  will 

P^  granted  by  all  who  have  claim  to  be  considered 
*"initarians ;  the  objections,  which  some  among  them 

^*a-y  be  disposed  to  raise,  lying  rather  against  its 
''cged  over- exactness  in  systematizing  Scripture, 
^^n  against  the  truths  themselves  which  are  con- 
fined in  it.     But  it  should  be  remembered,  that  it  is 

7*'*  in  after  times  who  systematize  the  statements  of 
*^e  Fathers,  which,  as  they  occur  in  their  works,  are 
•^r  the  most  part  as  natural  and  unpremeditated  as 

*-^05e  of  the  inspired  volume   itself.      If  the   more 

^^act  terms  and   phrases  of  any  writer  be  brought 

^^gether,  that  is,  of  a  writer  who  has  fixed  principles 

N  2 

I  So  Variations  in  the  [chap.  ii. 

a;  all,  of  course  they  will  appear  technical  and  severe. 
Wo  count  the  words  of  the  Fathers,  and  measure 
I  heir  sentences ;  and  so  convert  doxologies  into 
ci  wds.  That  we  do  so,  that  the  Church  has  done  so 
more  or  less  from  the  Nicene  Council  downwards,  is 
the  fault  of  those  who  have  obliged  us,  of  those  who, 
•*  while  men  slept,"  have  "  sowed  tares  among  the 

This  remark  applies  to  the  statements  brought 
together  in  the  last  Section,  from  the  early  writers : 
which,  even  though  generally  subservient  to  certain 
in^portant  ends,  as,  for  instance,  the  maintenance  of 
the  Unity  of  God,  &c.,  are  still  on  the  whole  written 
fiwly  and  devotionally.  But  now  the  discussion 
^Kt^ses  on  to  that  more  intentional  systematizing  on 
ihv'  part  of  the  Ante-Nicene  Fathers,  which,  unavoid- 
<^Wv^  a>»  it  was,  yet  because  it  was  in  part  conventional 
^\\k\  individual,  was  ambiguous,  and  in  consequence 
^UV^^V\kHl  at  times  an  apparent  countenance  to  the 
.\vi<\u  heresy.  It  often  becomes  necessary  to  settle 
^U^N  |i!\raseology  of  divinity,  in  points,  where  the  chief 
wunvUKmu  is,  to  select  the  clearest  words  to  express 
V^sKiixMirt  in  which  all  agree  ;  or  to  find  the  proposition 
\x^iv  h  will  best  fit  in  with,  and  connect,  a  number  of 
\\s\^VahI  doctrines.  Thus  the  Calvinists  dispute 
^V^^HS  themselves  whether  or  not  God  wills  the  dam- 
%HH'«^^^  of  the  non-elect ;  both  parties  agree  in  doctrine, 
'A^X  \lvu»bt  how  their  own  meaning  may  be  best 
,^ss^\vi.^vHl '.  However  clearly  we  see,  and  firmly  we 
IVtcy^  ^hv^  truth,  we  have  a  natural  fear  of  the  appear- 
"|S||^cJf'  iot'onsistency ;  nay,  a  becoming  fear  of  mis- 

:.«y||^  ^^^^\/|   liifjtnnrp  infra,  ch.  v.  §  2,  in  the  controversy  about  the 

^ctvr^Aiite-Nicene  Theological  Statements.  1 8 1 

leading  others  by  our  inaccuracy  of  language  ;  and 
especially  when  our  words  have  been  misinterpreted 
by  opponents,  arc  we  anxious  to  guard  against  such 
an  inconvenience  in  future.  There  are  two  charac- 
teristics of  opinions  subjected  to  this  intellectual 
scnjtiny;  first,  tliey  are  variously  expressed  during 
the  process ;  secondly,  they  are  consigned  to  arbitrary 
fonnulas,  at  the  end  of  it.  Now,  to  exemplify  this  in 
certain  Ante-Nicene  statements  of  the  great  Catholic 

The  word  u^aiinxro^,  vigenitiis  (iinhoni,  iiigeiierate), 
was  the  philosophical  term  to  denote  that  which  had 
existed  from  eternity.  It  had  accordingly  been 
applied  by  Aristotle  to  the  world  or  to  matter,  which 
was  according  to  his  system  without  beginning  ;  and 
by  Plato  to  his  ideas.  Now  since  the  Divine  Word 
was  according  to  Scripture  generate.  He  could  not  be 
called  ingenerate  (or  eternal),  without  a  verbal  contra- 
diction. In  process  of  time  a  distinction  was  made 
between  arfkvrfro^  and  arievvTyTot,  (increate  and  ifigene- 
rate.)  according  as  the  letter  v  was  or  was  not  doubled, 
30  that  the  Son  might  be  said  to  be  ayevtjrw^  yevuTjro^ 
^Uicreately  generate).  The  argument  which  arose  from 
this  perplexity  of  language,  is  urged  byArius  himself; 
who  ridicules  the  aAievvT)Tcr{evk<!,  ingenerately-generate, 
which  he  conceives  must  be  ascribed,  according  to  the 
orthodox  creed,  to  the  Son  of  God==.  Some  years 
afterwards,  the  same  was  the  palmary,  or  rather  the 
essential  argument  of  Eunomius,  the  champion  of  the 

^^^lom  cea  ns 

1 82  Variations  in  the  cha?.  ii. 


The  avapxop  (unoriginate).  As  is  implied  in  the 
word  monarchiay  as  already  explained,  the  Father 
alone  is  the  arcJu^  or  origin^  and  the  Son  and  Spirit 
are  not  origins.  The  heresy  of  the  Tritheists  made  it 
necessary  to  insist  upon  this.  Hence  the  condemna- 
tion, in  the  (so-called)  Apostolical  Canons,  of  those 
who  baptized  "  into  the  name  of  Three  Unoriginate^." 
And  Athanasius  says,  "  We  do  not  teach  three  Origins, 
as  our  illustration  shows  ;  for  we  do  not  speak  of 
three  Suns,  but  of  the  Sun  and  its  radiance  ^."  For 
the  same  reason  the  early  writers  spoke  of  the  Father 
as  the  Fount  of  Divinity.  At  the  same  time,  lest 
they  should  in  word  dishonour  the  Son,  they  ascribed 
to  Him  "  an  unoriginate  generation  "  or  "  birth  5." 
Thus  Alexander,  the  first  champion  of  orthodox  truth 
against  Arius,  in  his  letter  to  his  namesake  of  Byzan- 
tium: "We  must  reserve  to  the  unbegotten  (or unborn) 
Father  His  peculiar  prerogative,  confessing  that  no 
one  is  the  cause  of  His  existence,  and  to  the  Son  we 
must  pay  the  due  honour,  attributing  to  Him  the 
unoriginate  generation  from  the  Father,  and  as  we 
have  said  already,  paying  Him  worship,  so  as  ever  to 
speak  of  Him  piously  and  reverently,  as  *  pre-existent, 
ever-living,*  and  *  before  the  worlds^. '"  This  distinction 
however,  as  might  be  expected,  was  but  partially  re- 

^  Bull,  Defens.  iv.  i,  §  6. 

*  Cudw.  Intell.  Syst.  4,  §  36  [p.  709,  ed.  Mosheim.  But  the  Benedic- 
tine Ed.  in  Cyril,  Catech.  xi.,  says  that  Athanasius  maintained  the  Son's 
avap-)(OV.  Epiphanius,  from  i  Cor.  xi.  3,  argues  that  the  Father  is  the 
K€<l>aXrj,  not  the  a/)XV>  of  the  Son.     Haer.  76,  fin.] 

*  Suicer.  Symb.  Nicen.  c.  viii. 

*  Theod.  Hist.  i.  4,  p.  i8. 

^in:.n^Anie'^uene  Theological Siatemenls.i^j, 

celved  among  the  Catholics.  Contrasted  with  all 
t^reated  beings,  the  Son  and  Spirit  are  of  necessity 
^noriginate  in  the  Unity  of  the  Father.  Clement, 
">r  instance,  calls  the  Son,  "  the  everlasting,  unori- 
^Date,  origin  and  commencement  of  all  things  '."  It 
*as  not  till  they  became  alive  to  the  seeming  ditheism 
Ofsuch  phrases,  which  the  Sabcllian  controversy  was 
Sure  to  charge  upon  them,  that  they  learned  the 
accurate  discrimination  observed  by  Alexander.  On 
(he  other  hand,  when  the  Arian  contest  urged  them 
in  the  contrary  direction  to  SabelHus,  then  they 
returned  more  or  less  to  the  original  language  of 
Clement,  though  with  a  fuller  explanation  of  their 
own  meaning.  Gregory  Nyssen  gives  the  following 
plain  account  of  the  variations  of  their  practice: 
Whereas  the  word  Origin  has  many  significations  .  .  . 
sometimes  we  say  that  the  appellation  of  the  Unorigi- 
not  unsuitable  to  the  Son.  For  when  it  is 
;eo  to  mean  derivation  of  substance  from  no  cause, 
this  indeed  we  ascribe  to  the  Father  alone.  But 
according  to  the  other  senses  of  the  word,  since 
creation,  time,  the  order  of  the  world  are  referred  to 
an  origin,  in  respect  of  these  we  ascribe  to  the  Only- 
begotten,  superiority  to  any  origin ;  so  as  to  believe 
Him  to  be  beyond  creation,  time,  and  mundane  order, 
through  whom  were  made  all  things.  And  thus  we 
confess  Him,  who  is  not  unoriginate  in  regard  to  His 
subsistence,  in  all  other  respects  to  be  unoriginate, 
and,  while  the  Father  is  unoriginate  and  unborn,  the 
Son  to  be  unoriginate  in  the  sense  explained,  but  not 
unborn  8." 

^^^Bl  Gregory  ^ 

TV*"  S)(povov,  ayapxov,  ifixjv  Tt  Kai  airapxijv  ti 
Gregory  Naiianzcn  sa/s  the  same  mate  concisely :  i 

184  Variations  in  the  [chap.  ii. 

The  word  cause  {aiTioi)  used  in  this  passage,  as  a 
substitute  for  that  use  of  Origin  which  peculiarly 
applies  to  the  Father  as  the  Fount  of  Divinity,  is 
found  as  early  as  the  time  of  Justin  Martyr,  Avho  in 
his  dialogue  with  Trypho,  declares  the  Father  is  to  the 
Son  the  amo9,  or  cause  of  His  being;  and  it  was 
resumed  by  the  Post-Nicene  writers,  when  the  Arian 
controversy  was  found  to  turn  in  no  small  degree  on 
the  exact  application  of  such  terms.  Thus  Gregory 
Nazianzen  says,  "  There  is  One  -God,  seeing  that  the 
Son  and  Spirit  are  referred  to  One  Cause  9." 


The  Ante-Nicene  history  of  the  word  homousion  or 
consubstantialy  which  the  Council  of  Nicaea  adopted  as 
its  test,  will  introduce  a  more  important  discussion. 

It  is  one  characteristic  of  Revelation,  that  it  clears 
up  all  doubts  about  the  existence  of  God,  as  separate 
from,  and  independent  of  nature ;  and  shows  us  that 
the  course  of  the  world  depends  not  merely  on  a  sys- 
tem, but  on  a  Being,  real,  living,  and  individual.  What 
we  ourselves  witness,  evidences  to  us  the  operation 
of  laws,  physical  and  moral ;  but  it  leaves  us  unsatis- 
fied, whether  or  not  the  principle  of  these  be  a  mere 
nature  or  fate,  whether  the  life  of  all  things  be  a  mere 
Anima  Mundi,  a  spirit  connatural  with  the  body  in 

aiTtov  Tov  IlaTcpa  Xafi^avrj^j  ovk  avap)(os'  oipXV  J^P  ^ov  IlaT^, 
<as  amos.  Bull,  Defens.  iv.  2,  §  8.  i  ;  §  3.  Petav.  i.  4,  §  i.  Suicer, 

•  However,  here  too  we  have  a  variation  in  the  use  of  the  word: 
airios  being  sometimes  applied  to  the  Son  in  the  sense  apX'?'  '^^ 
Latin  word  answering  to  airios  is  sometimes  causae  more  commonly 
principium  or  auctor.    Bull,  Defens.  iv.  i,  §  2 ;  $  4.    Petav.  ?,  5,  $  lo. 

^^^^i  IV.]  Ante-Nicene  Tkeologital  Statements.  185 

•^^ich  ft  acts,  or  an  Agent  powerful  to  make  or  un 
?^*iVe,  to  change  or  supersede,  according  to  His  will. 

^  is  here  that  Revelation  suppHes  the  deficiency  of  ' 
*^fciiosop!iical  religion  ;  miracles  arc  its  emblem,  as 
'■'^eil  as  its  credentials,  forcing  on  the  imagination  the 
*^sistence  of  an  irresponsible  self-dependent  Being,  as 
"^'cll  as  recommending  a  particular  message  to  the 
*-eason.  This  great  truth,  conveyed  in  the  very  cir- 
<:;umstances  under  which  Revelation  was  made,  is 
explicitly  recognized  in  its  doctrine.  Among  other 
modes  of  inculcating  it,  may  be  named  the  appellation 
under  which  Almighty  God  disclosed  Himself  to  the 
Israelites ;  Jehovah  {or,  as  the  Septuagint  translates  it, 
0  Zu)  being  an  expressive  appellation  of  Him,  who  is 
essentially  separate  from  those  variable  and  perishable 
beings  or  substances,  which  creation  presents  to  our 
observation.  Accordingly,  the  description  of  Him  as 
TO  6v,  or  in  other  words,  the  doctrine  of  the  Qvala  of 
God,  that  is,  of  God  viewed  as  Being  and  as  the  one 
Being,  became  familiar  to  the  minds  of  the  primitive 
Christians  ;  as  embodying  the  spirit  of  the  Scriptures, 
and  indirectly  witnessing  against  the  characteristic 
error  of  pagan  philosophy,  which  considered  the 
Divine  Mind,  not  as  a  reality,  but  as  a  mere  abstract 
name,  or  generalized  Jaw  of  nature,  or  at  best  as  a 
mere  mode,  principle,  or  an  animating  soul,  not  a 
Being  externa!  to  creation,  and  possessed  of  individu- 
ality. Cyril  of  Alexandria  defines  the  word  oiia-ia, 
fiisia,  being,  substance,)  to  be  "  that  which  has  exis- 
tence in  itself,  independent  of  every  thing  else  to 
constitute  it';"   that  is,  an  individual.      This  sense 

-  nyiay^  av^ujrapirrov,  ^t\   &of«vov   ijipax  Trpos  T^v  ravrov 
'  licer,  Thesaur.  verb,  oio-to. 


t86  Variations  in  the  [chap.  ii. 

of  the  word  must  be  carefully  borne  in  mind,  since  it 
was  not  that  in  which  it  is  used  by  philosophers,  who 
by  it  denoted  the  genus  or  species,  or  the  "  ens  unum 
in  multis," — ^a  sense  which  of  course  it  could  not  bear 
when  applied  to  the  One  Incommunicable  God.  The 
word,  thus  appropriated  to  the  service  of  the  God  of 
Revelation,  was  from  the  earliest  date  used  to  express 
the  reality  and  subsistence  of  the  Son ;  and  no  word 
could  be  less  metaphorical  and  more  precise  for  this 
purpose,  although  the  Platonists  chose  to  refine,  and 
from  an  affectation  of  reverence  refused  to  speak  of 
God  except  as  hyperiisios^,  Justin  Martyr,  for 
instance,  speaks  of  heretics,  who  considered  that  God 
put  forth  and  withdrew  His  Logos  when  it  pleased 
Him,  as  if  He  were  an  influence,  not  a  Person 3,  some- 
what in  the  sense  afterwards  adopted  by  Paulus  of 
Samosata  and  others.  To  meet  this  error,  he  speaks 
of  Him  as  inseparable  from  the  substance  or  being, 
usiuy  of  the  Father ;  that  is,  in  order  to  exclude  all  such 
evasions  of  Scripture,  as  might  represent  the  man 
Christ  as  inhabited  by  a  divine  glory,  power,  nature, 
and  the  like,  evasions  which  in  reality  lead  to  the  con- 
clusion that  He  is  not  God  at  all. 

For  this  purpose  the  word  homoiision  or  consubstan- 
tial  was  brought  into  use  among  Christian  writers  ; 
viz.  to  express  the  real  divinity  of  Christ,  and  that,  as 
being  derived  from,  and  one  with  the  Father's.  Here 
again,  as  in  the  instance  of  its  root,  the  word  was 
adopted,  from  the  necessity  of  the  case,  in  a  sense 

'  [Or  cTTCKCtva  ovcrtas]  Petav.  [t.  i.  i.  6]  t.  ii.  iv.  5,  §  8.  [Brucker,  t. 
2»  P'  395'  Plot.  Enn.  v.  lib.  i.  We  find  VTr€pov<no^  or  iir€K€wa 
ovcrtas  in  Orig.  c.  Gels.  vi.  64.     Damasc.  F.  O.  i.  4,  8,  and  12.] 

•  Justin,  Tryph.  1289 


<3  liferent  from  the  ordinary  philosophical  use  of  it. 
--^-JomoUsioti   properly  means  of  the  same  nature,   or 
«_«nder  the  same  general  nature,  or  species  ;  that  is,  it  is 
^a.pplied  to  things,  which  are  but  similar  to  each  other, 
^nd  are  considered  as  one  by  an  abstraction  of  our 
■■minds;  or,  it  may  mean  of  the  same  material.     Thus 
Aristotle  speaks  of  the  stars  being  consubstantial  with 
«ach  other ;   and    Porphyry   of   the   souls    of  brute 
animals  being  consubstantial  to  ours^.     \Vlien,  how- 
ever, it  was  used  in  relation  to  the  incommunicable 
Essence  of  God,  there  was  obviously  no  abstraction 
possible  in  contemplating   Him,    who    is   above    all 
comparison  with  His  works.     His  nature  is  solitary, 
peculiar  to  Himself,  and  one  ;  so  that  whatever  was 
accounted  to  be  consubstantial  or  co-essential   with 
Htm,  was  necessarily  included  in  His  individuality,  by 
all  who  would  avoid  recurring  to  the  vagueness  of 
philosophy,  and  were  cautious  to  distinguish  between 
the   incommunicable   Essence    of  Jehovah    and    all 
created  intelligences.     And  hence  the  fitness  of  the 
term  to  denote  without  metaphor  the  relation  which 
the  Logos  bore  in  the  orthodox  creed  to  His  eternal 
Father.     Its  use  is  explained  by  Athanasius  as  fol- 
loivs.     "Though,"  he  says,    "we  cannot  understand 
what  is  meant  by  the  usia,  being,  or  substance  of  God, 
yet  we  know  as  much  as  this,  that  God  is,  which  is  the 
way  in  which  Scripture  speaks  of  Him  ;    and  after 
.  this  pattern,  when  we  wish  to  designate   Him  dis- 

^^Htbictly,  we  say  God,  Father,  Lord.  When  then  He 
^^^Bhys  in  Scripture,  'I  am  o  ui',' the  Being,  and  '  I  am 
^^Hjchovah,  God,'  or  uses  the  plain  word  '  God,'  we  under- 
^^^Btand  by  such  statements  nothing  but  His  incompri.'- 

^^H  *  Dull,  Defens.       i,  «  i. 

1 88  Variations  in  the  [chap.  n, 

hensible  oxxrla  (being  or  substance),  and  that  He,  who 
is  there  spoken  of,  is.  Let  no  one  then  think  it 
strange,  that  the  Son  of  God  should  be  said  to  be 
€«  T^9  ovalaf;  (from  the  being  or  substance)  of  God  ; 
rather,  let  him  agree  to  the  explanation  of  the  Nicene 
fathers,  who,  for  the  words 'of  God'  substituted  'of  the 
divine  being  or  substance.'  They  considered  the  two 
phrases  substantially  the  same,  because,  as  I  have  said, 
the  word  'God*  denotes  nothing  but  the  ovala  avrov 
Tov  &vTo^y  the  being  of  Him  who  is.  On  the  other 
hand,  if  the  Word  be  not  in  such  sense  'of  God,*  as  to 
be  the  true  Son  of  the  Father  according  to  His  nature, 
but  be  said  to  be  'of  God,*  merely  as  all  creatures  are 
such  because  they  are  His  work,  then  indeed  He  is  not 
'from  the  being  of  the  Father,*  nor  Son  'according  to 
being  or  substance,'  but  so  called  from  His  virtue,  as 
we  may  be,  who  receive  the  title  from  graced." 

The  term  hontoiisios  is  first  employed  for  this  pur- 
pose by  the  author  of  the  Pcemander,  a  Christian  of 
the  beginning  of  the  second  century.  Next  it  occurs  in 
several  writers  at  the  end  of  the  second  and  the  begin- 
ning of  the  third.  In  Tertullian,  the  equivalent 
phrase,  "unius  substantiae,"  "^  one  substance^'  is  ap- 
plied to  the  Trinity.  In  Origen's  comment  on  the 
Hebrews,  the  homoiision  of  the  Son  is  deduced  from 
the  figurative  title  airaxr^aafuiy  or  radiance,  there  given 
to  Him.  In  the  same  age,  it  was  employed  by  various 
writers,  bishops  and  historians,  as  we  learn  from  the 
testimonies  of  Eusebius  and  Athanasius^.  But  at  this 
era,  the  middle  of  the  third  century,  a  change  took 

'  Achan.  de  Deer.  Nic.  22. 

•  [Vide  Ath.  Tr.  vol.  ii.  p.  438.     Also  Archelaus  speaks  of  our  Lord 
as  **de  substantia  Dei."    Routh,  t.  iv.  p.  228.] 

SECT.  Ti^Ante-I^icene  Theological  Statements.  1 89 

place  in  the  use  of  it  and  other  similar  words,  which 
5s  next  to  be  explained. 

The  oriental  doctrine  of  Emanations  was  at  a  very 
early  period  combined  with  the  Christian  theology. 
According  to  the  system  of  Valeiitinus,  a  Gnostic 
heresiarch,  who  flourished  in  the  early  part  of  the 
second  century,  the  Supreme  Intelligence  of  the  world 
L  gave  existence  to  a  line  of  Spirits  or  Eons,  who  were 
I  all  more  or  less  partakers  of  His  nature,  that  is,  of  a 
J  nature  specifically  the  same,  and  included  in  His  glory 
(TrX^pwpi),  though  individually  separate  from  the  true 
and  Sovereign  Deity.  It  is  obvious,  that  such  a 
teaching  as  this  abandons  the  great  revealed  principle 
above  insisted  on,  the  incommunicable  character  and 
individuality  of  the  Divine  Essence.  It  considers  all 
spiritual  beings  as  like  God,  in  the  same  sense  that 
one  man  resembles  or  has  the  same  nature  as  another: 
and  accordingly  it  was  at  liberty  to  apply,  and  did 
actually  apply,  to  the  Creator  and  His  creatures  the 
word  homoiision  or  constibstantial,  in  the  philosophical 
sense  which  the  word  originally  bore.  We  have  evi- 
dence in  the  work  of  Irenseus  that  the  Valentinians 
did  thus  employ  it.  The  Manichces  followed,  about 
a  century  later ;  they  too  were  Emanatists,  and  spoke 
of  the  human  soul  as  being  consubstaiitial  or  co-essen- 
tial with  God,  of  one  substance  with  God.  Their 
principles  evidently  allowed  of  a  kind  of  Trinitarian- 
ism  ;  the  Son  and  Spirit  being  considered  Eons  of  a 
superior  order  to  the  rest,  constibstantial  with  God 
because  Eons,  but  one  with  God  in  no  sense  which 
was  not  true  also  of  the  soul  of  man.  It  is  said,  more- 
rover,  that  they  were  materialists  ;  and  used  the  word 
tonsutistantial  as  it  may  be  applied  to  different  vessels 

1  go  Variaiions  in  tfie  [chap.  n. 

or  instruments,  wrought  out  from  some  one  mass  of 
metal  or  wood.  However,  whether  this  was  so  or  not, 
it  is  plain  that  anyhow  the  word  in  question  would 
become  unsuitable  to  express  the  Catholic  doctrine,  in 
proportion  as  the  ears  of  Christians  were  familiarized 
to  the  terms  employed  in  the  Gnostic  and  Manichean 
theologies  ;  nor  is  it  wonderful  that  at  length  they 
gave  up  the  use  of  it. 

The  history  of  the  word  probole  or  offspring  is  par- 
allel to  that  of  the  consubstantiaP ,  It  properly  means 
any  thing  which  proceeds,  or  is  sent  forth  from  the 
substance  of  another,  as  the  fruit  of  a  tree,  or  the  rays 
of  the  sun  ;  in  Latin  it  is  translated  hy prolatio^  emission 
or  editiOy  an  offspring  or  issue.  Accordingly  Justin 
employed  it,  or  rather  a  cognate  phrase  8,  to  designate 
what  Cyril  calls  above  the  self-existence^  of  the  Son, 
in  opposition  to  the  evasions  which  were  necessary  for 
the  system  of  Paulus,  Sabellius,  and  the  rest.  Ter- 
tullian  does  the  same  ;  but  by  that  time,  Valentinus 
had  given  the  word  a  material  signification.  Hence 
TertuUian  is  obliged  to  apologize  for  using  it,  when 
writing  against  Praxeas,  the  forerunner  of  the  Sabel- 
lians.  "  Can  the  Word  of  God,"  he  asks,  "be  unsub- 
stantial, who  is  called  the  Son,  who  is  even  named 
God  ?  He  is  said  to  be  in  the  form  or  image  of  God. 
Is  not  God  a  body  [substance].  Spirit  though  Hebe.^ . . 
Whatever  then  has  been  the  substance  of  the  Word,^ 
that,  I  call  a  Person,  and  claim  for  it  the  name  of  Son, 
and  being  such.  He  comes  next  to  the  Father.  Let 
no  one  suppose  that  I  am  bringing  in  the  notion  of 

7  Beausobre,  Hist.  Manich.  iii.  7.  §  6.  [Vide  Ath.  Tr.  vol.  ii.  p.  458.] 

•  irpopXrjOev  yiwrjixa.    Justin.  Tryph.  62. 

•  avToyoi/o9.    [Vide  Ath.  Tr.  art.  vtoirttTw/o,  vol.  ii.  p. 47$.  ed.  1S81.] 
»  [Ibid.  p.  340,  art.  IVord.} 

.  iv.'\Anie-NiceHe T/ieologkal  Statcmnits.  1 9 1 

■  any    s\ic\\  frobole  {offspring)  as  Valcntinus  imagined, 

I  drawing  out  his  Eons  the  one  from  the  other.     Why 

[  must   I  give  up  the  word  in  a  right  sense,  because 

s  it  in  a  wrong?  besides,  heresy  borrowed 

't  ii"om  us,  and  has  turned  truth  into  a  he.  ...  .  This 

IS  tile  difference  between  the  uses  of  it     Valentinus 

separates  his  probo!<B  from  their  Father  ;    they  know 

W'rn  not     But  we  hold  that  the  Son  alone  knows  the 

''^thcr,  reveals  Him,  performs  His  will,  and  is  within 

"irn.     He  is  ever  in  the  Father,  as  He  has  said  ;  ever 

^ith  God,  as  it  is  written  ;  never  separated  from  Him, 

^i"  He  and  the  Father  are  one.     This  is  the  true/ro- 

"'^^c,  the  safeguard  of  unity,  sent  forth,  not  divided 

*^*»'^ "     Soon  after  Tertullian  thus  defended  his  use  of 

cne  word  probole,  Origen  in  another  part  of  the  Church 

&  it  up,  or  rather  assailed   it,  in   argument   with 

^3-ndidus,  a  Valentinian.     "If  the  Son  is  a  probole  of 

iio   Father,"  he  says,  "who  begets  Him  from  Himself, 

''^^i  the  birth  of  animals,  then  of  necessity  both  off- 

'F**~ing  and  original  arc  of  a  bodily  nature^."     Here 

^    see  two  writers,  with  exactly  the  same  theological 

*~^ed  before  them,  taking  opposite  views  as  to  the  pro- 

^*^i«ty  of  using  a  word  which  heresy  had  corrupted-^. 

^.^^     ^ut  to  return  to  the  word  consubstantial :  though 

*"  igen  gave  up  the  word  probole,  yet  he  used  the  word 

'^^^ substantial,  as  has  already  been  mentioned'*.     But 

^*-K3rtiy  after  his  death,  his  pupils  abandoned  it  at  the 

*■  Tertull.  in  Prax.  7,  8,  aliridged. 
^  [Pcriarch.  iv.  p.  190.] 
■j.,,^   *  Vide  an  apposile  note  of  Coustanr.   Epp.  Pont.  Bom.  p.  496, 
nasus's  Woids  :  "nre  ptolativum,  ut  gtnstationcm  d  drmas."] 
[Hut  he  was  not  consistent.    Vide  Hitron.  eonlr.  Buff.  ii.  19.     , 


192  Variations  in  the  [chap.  ii. 

celebrated  Council  held  at  Antioch  (A.D.  264)  against 
Paulus  of  Samosata.  When  they  would  have  used  it 
as  a  test,  this  heretic  craftily  objected  to  it  on  the  very 
ground  on  which  Origen  had  surrendered  the  probole. 
He  urged  that,  if  Father  and  Son  were  of  one  sub- 
stance, consubstantial,  there  was  some  common  sub- 
stance in  which  they  partook,  and  which  consequently 
was  distinct  from  and  prior  to  the  Divine  Persons 
Themselves  ;  a  wretched  sophism,  which  of  course 
could  not  deceive  Firmilian  and  Gregory,  but  which, 
being  adapted  to  perplex  weak  minds,  might  decide 
them  on  withdrawing  the  word.  It  is  remarkable  too, 
that  the  Council  was  held  about  the  time  when  Manes 
appeared  on  the  borders  of  the  Antiochene  Patriarch- 
ate. The  disputative  school  of  Paulus  pursued  the 
advantage  thus  gained  ;  and  from  that  time  used  the 
charge  of  materialism  as  a  weapon  for  attacking  all 
sound  expositions  of  Scripture  truth.  Having  ex- 
torted from  the  Catholics  the  condemnation  of  a  word 
long  known  in  the  Church,  almost  found  in  Scripture, 
and  less  figurative  and  material  in  its  meaning  than 
any  which  could  be  selected,  and  objectionable  only  in 
the  mouths  of  heretics,  they  employed  this  concession 
as  a  ground  of  attacking  expressions  more  directly 
metaphorical,  taken  from  visible  objects,  and  sanc- 
tioned by  less  weighty  authority.  In  a  letter  which 
shall  afterwards  be  cited,  Arius  charges  the  Catholics 
with  teaching  the  errors  of  Valentinus  and  Manes ; 
and  in  another  of  the  original  Arian  documents, 
Eusebius  of  Nicomedia,  maintains  in  like  manner 
that  their  doctrine  involves  the  materiality  of  the 
Divine  Nature.  Thus  they  were  gradually  silencing 
the  Church  by  a  process  which  legitimately  led  to 

5£CT.  jv^Ante-Nicene  T/ieo  logical  Statements.  193 

Pa.ntheism,  when  the  Alexandrians  gave  the  alarm, 
and  nobly  stood  forward  in  defence  of  the  faith  5. 

It   is    worth    observing    that,   when    the    Asiatic 

Cliurches  had  given  up  the  consubsiantial^  they,  on 

ttie  contrary,  had  preserved  it     Not  only  Dionysius 

willingly  accepts  the  challenge  of  his  namesake  of 

R^cme,  who  reminded  him  of  the  value  of  the  symbol ; 

t>vit  Theognostus  also,  who  presided  at  the  Catecheti- 

caJ  School  at  the  end  of  the  third  century,  recognizes 

it  by  implication  in  the  following  passage,  which  has 

t)€en  preserved  by  Athanasius.     "  The  substance  ^  of 

the  Son,"  he  says,  "is  not  external  to  the  Father,  or 

treated  ;  but  it  is  by  natural  derivation  from  that  of 

the  Father,  as  the  radiance  comes  from  light  (Heb.  i.  3). 

■P'or  the   radiance   is  not  the  sun,  .  .  .  and  yet  not 

foreign  fo  it ;  and  in  like  manner  there  is  an  effluence 

(oi^r^^^ota,  Wisd.  vii.  25.)  from  the  Father's  substance, 

though  it  be  indivisible  from  Him.     For  as  the  sun 

^^^>nains  the  same  without  infringement  of  its  nature, 

tixough  it  pour  forth    its   radiance,   so   the   Father's 

^^tjstance  is   unchangeable,  though   the   Son   be   its 


Some  notice  of  the  Oekriaei  yevvrjOev,  or  voluntary 
^^  ^^  neration,  will  suitably  follow  the  discussion  of  the 

*  [Parallel  to  the  above  instances  is  BnsH's  objection  to  yiwrffia^  when 
^^^  of  Ihc  Son,  which  Athanasius  and  others  apply  to  him.     Vide 

%.h.  Tr,  vol.  ii.  p.  .'96.] 

*  [It  may  be  questioned,  however,  whether  the  word  fidstance  in  this 
ssage  is  not  equivalent  to  hypostasis  or  subsistence  ^  vide  Appendix, 

'  Athan.  de  Deer.  Nic.  25. 


194 )  Variations  in  tJu  [ciiap.  ii. 

consubstantial ;  though  the  subject  does  not  closely 
concern  theology.  It  has  been  already  observed  that 
the  tendency  of  the  heresies  of  the  first  age  was  to- 
wards materialism  and  fatalism.  As  it  was  the  object 
I  of  Revelation  to  destroy  all  theories  which  interfered 
I  with  the  belief  of  the  Divine  Omniscience  and  active 
;  i  Sovereignty,  so  the  Church  seconded  this  design  by 
1 1  receiving  and  promulgating  the  doctrine  of  the  "  He 
jj  that  isy*  or  the  Divine  '* Being''  or  ^^ Essence,''  as  a 
symbol  of  His  essential  distinction  from  the  perishable 
world  in  which  He  acts.  But  when  the  word  substance 
or  essence  itself  was  taken  by  the  Gnostics  and  Mani- 
chees  in  a  material  sense,  the  error  was  again  intro- 
duced by  the  very  term  which  was  intended  to  witness 
against  it  According  to  the  Oriental  Theory,  the 
emanations  from  the  Deity  were  eternal  with  Himself, 
and  were  considered  as  the  result,  not  of  His  will  and 
personal  energy,  but  of  the  necessary  laws  to  which 
His  nature  was  subjected ;  a  doctrine  which  was  but 
fatalism  in  another  shape.  The  Eclectics  honourably 
distinguished  themselves  in  withstanding  this  blasphe- 
mous, or  rather  atheistical  tenet.  Plotinus  declares, 
that  "  God's  substance  and  His  will  are  the  same ;  and 
if  so,  as  He  willed,  so  He  is  ;  so  that  it  is  not  a  more 
certain  truth  that,  as  is  His  substance  or  nature,  so  is 
His  will  and  action,  than,  as  His  will  and  action,  so  is 
His  substance."  Origen  had  preceded  them  in  their 
opposition  to  the  same  school.  Speaking  of  the 
simplicity  and  perfection  of  the  Divine  Essence,  he 
says,  "  God  does  not  even  participate  in  substance, 
rather  He  is  partaken  ;  by  those,  namely,  who  have 
the  Spirit  of  God.  And  our  Saviour  does  not  share 
in  holiness,  but,  being  holiness  itself,  is  shared  by  the 

holy."    The  meaning  of  this  doctrine  is  clear ; — ^to 
protest,  in  the  manner  of  Athanasius,  in  a  passage 
lat:Iy  cited,  against  the  notion  that  the  substance  of 
God  is  something  distinct  from  God  Himself,  and  not 
God  viewed  as  self-existent,  the  one  immaterial,  intel- 
ligent, all-perfect  Spirit ;  but  the  risk  of  it  lay  in  its 
tendency  to  destroy  the  doctrine  of  His  individual 
and  real  existence  (whicJi  tiie  Catholic  use  of  substance 
symbolized),  and  to  introduce  in  its  stead  the  notion 
that  a  quality  or  mode  of  acting  was  the  governing 
principle  of  nature ;  in  other  words,  Pantheism.    This 
(s  an   error  of  which   Origeii   of  course   cannot  be 
accused  ;  but  it  is  in  its  measure  chargeable  on  the 
Platonic  Masters,  and  is  countenanced  even  by  their 
mode  of  speaking  of  the  Supreme  Being,  as  not  sub- 
stantial, but  above  the  notion  of  substance  S," 

The  controversy  did  not  terminate  in  the  subject  of 
Theism,  but  was  pursued  by  the  heretical  party  into 
questions  of  Christian  Theology,  The  Manichees  con- 
sidered tlie  Son  and  Spirit  as  necessary  emanations 
from  the  Father  ;  erring,  first,  in  their  classing  those 
Divine  Persons  with  intelligences  confessedly  imper- 
fect and  subservient  ;  next,  in  introducing  a  sort  of 
materialism  into  their  notion  of  the  Deity.  The 
Eclectics  on  the  other  hand,  maintained,  by  a  strong 
figure,  that  the  Eternal  Son  originated  from  the 
Father  at  His  own  will ;  meaning  thereby,  that  the 
everlasting  mystery,  which  constitutes  tlie  relation 
between  Father  and  Son,  has  no  physical  or  material 
conditions,  and  is  such  as  becomes  Him  who  is  alto- 

vn-fpoixrtoc.      Cudw.  IntelJ.  Syst.  iv.  %  ij.     Petar.  vL.  S,  i  H),  itwl 


196  Variations  in  the  [chap.  n. 

gether  Mind,  and  bound  by  no  laws,  but  those  estab- 
lished by  His  own  perfection  as  a  first  cause.  Thus 
lamblichus  calls  the  Son  self-begotten 9. 

The  discussion  seems  hardly  to  have  entered  farther 
into  the  Ante-Nicene  Church,  than  is  implied  in  the 
above  notice  of  it :  though  some  suppose  that  Justin 
and  others  referred  the  divine  gennesis  or  generatio7i  to 
the  will  of  God.  However,  it  is  easy  to  see  that  the 
ground  was  prepared  for  the  introduction  of  a  subtle 
and  irreverent  question,  whenever  the  theologizing 
Sophists  should  choose  to  raise  it  Accordingly,  it 
was  one  of  the  first  and  principal  interrogations  put  to 
the  Catholics  by  their  Arian  opponents,  whether  the 
generation  of  the  Son  was  voluntary  or  not  on  the  part 
of  the  Father ;  their  dilemma  being,  that  Almighty 
God  was  subject  to  laws  external  to  Himself,  if  it 
were  not  voluntary,  and  that,  if  on  the  other  hand  it 
was  voluntary,  the  Son  was  in  the  number  of  things 
created.     But  of  this  more  in  the  next  Section. 

The  Word  as  internal  or  external  to  the  Father ; 
X0709  ivBidOero^  and  Trpo<\>opiK6<;^ : — One  theory  there 
was,  adopted  by  several  of  the  early  Fathers,  which 
led  them  to  speak  of  the  Son's  generation  or  birtli  as 
resulting  from  the  Father's  will,  and  yet  did  not  inter- 
fere with  His  consubstantiality.  Of  the  two  titles 
ascribed  in  Scripture  to  our  Lord,  that  of  the  "  Word'' 
expresses  with  peculiar  force  His  co-eternity  in  the 
One  Almighty  Father.     On  the  other  hand,  the  title 

•  avToyovo^;*    [Vide  Ath.  Tr.  vol.  ii.  p.  475.] 
>  [Vide  Ath.  Tr.  vol.  ii.  pp.  340-342.] 

i^iv^Ante-Nieene  Theological Statcmmts.\<^'} 

"■?!!«"  has  more  distinct  reference  to  His  derivation 
and  tninistrative  office,     A  distinction  resembling  this 
had  already  been  applied  by  the  Stoics  to  the  Platonic 
Logos,  which  they  represented  under  two  aspects,  the 
f^w'tfero!  and  ■jrpoipopiKo^,  that  is,  the  internal  Thought 
Wd  Purpose  of  God,  and  its  external  Manifestation,  as 
ilin  words  spoken.     The  terms  were  received  among 
Catholics  ;  the  "  Endiathetic  "  standing  for  the  Word, 
3s  hid  from  everlasting  in  the  bosom  of  the  Father, 
"'ailc  the  "  Prophoric  "  was  the  Son  sent  forth  into  the 
"■orld,   in  apparent  separation   from  God,  with   His 
'^^ther's  name   and   attributes  upon    Him,  and   His 
^'^ther's  will  to  perform  2,     This  contrast  is  acknow- 
ledged  by  Athanaaius,  Gregory   Nyssen,  Cyril,   and 
otlier  Post-Nicene  writers  ;   nor  can  it  be  confuted, 
I'^ing  Scriptural  in  its  doctrine,  and  merely  expressed 
>^  philosophical  language,  found  ready  for  the  purpose. 
But  further,  this  change  of  state  in  the  Eternal  Word, 
from  repose  to   energetic   manifestation,  as   it   took 
place  at  the  creation,  was  called  by  them  a  gcnnesis  : 
and   here  too,  no  blame  attaches   to  them,  for  the 
expression  is  used  in  Scripture  in  different  senses,  one 
of  which  appears  to  be  the  very  signification  which 
they  put  on  it,  the  mission  of  the  Word  to  make  and 
govern  all  things.     Such  is  the  text  in  St.  Paul,  that 
He  is  '■  the  image  of  the  Invisible  God,  the  First-bom 
of  every  creature;"  such  is  His  title  in  St.  John  as 
"  the   Beginning  of  the   Creation   of  God  -5."      This 
getmesis  or  generation  was  called    also   the   "  going- 

1 98  Variations  in  the  [chap.  ii. 

forth,"  or  "condescension,"  of  the  Son,  which  may 
Scriptural ly  be  ascribed  to  the  will  of  the  all-bountiful 
Father^.  However,  there  were  some  early  writers 
who  seem  to  interpret  the  gennesis  in  this  meaning 
exclusively,  ascribing  the  title  of  "  Son  "  to  our  Lord 
only  after  the  date  of  His  mission  or  economy,  and 
considering  that  of  the  "  Word''  as  His  peculiar  appel- 
lation during  the  previous  eternity  5.  Nay,  if  we  carry 
off  their  expressions  hastily  or  perversely,  as  some 
theologians  have  done,  we  shall  perhaps  conclude  that 
they  conceived  that  God  existed  in  One  Person  before 
the  '' going'forthy'  and  then,  if  it  may  be  said,  by  a 
change  in  His  nature  began  to  exist  in  a  Second 
Person  ;  as  if  an  attribute  (the  Internal  Word,  **  Endia- 
thctic^')  had  come  into  substantive  being,  as  "  Prop/io- 
rkr  The  Fathers,  who  have  laid  themselves  open  to 
this  charge,  are  Athenagoras,  Tatian,  Theophilus, 
Hippolytus,  and  Novatian,  as  mentioned  in  the  first 

Now  that  they  did  not  mean  what  a  superficial 
reader  might  lay  to  their  charge,  may  be  argued,  first, 
from  the  parallel  language  of  the  Post-Nicenes,  as 
mentioned  above,  whose  orthodoxy  no  one  questions. 
Next,  from  the  extreme  absurdity,  not  to  speak  of  the 
impiety,  of  the  doctrine  imputed  to  them  ;  as  if,  with 
a  more  than  Gnostic  extravagance,  they  conceived 
that  any  change  or  extension  could  take  place  in  that 
Individual  Essence,  which  is  without  parts  or  passions, 

<  7r/)0cX€V(rts,  ovyKara^Sttcrts,  Bull,  Defens.  ill.  9.  [Other  writers 
support  him  in  this  view,  as  Maranus,  in  Just.  Tryph.  61,  and  in  his  work 
Divin.  Jes.  Christ  i,  lib.  iv.  c.  6.  Vide  contr.  Dissert.  3  and  4  iD 
the  Author's  "Theological  Tracts."] 

*  [Vide  *♦  Theological  Tracts,"  iil] 


)or  that  the  divine  generation  could  be  an  event  In  time, 
ifitead  of  being  considered  a  mere  expression  of  the 
kemal  relation  of  the  Father  towards  the  Son**, 
■ideed,  the  very  absurdity  of  the  literal  sense  of  the 
•ords,  in  whatever  degree  they  so  expressed  them- 
Wves,  was  the  mischief  to  be  apprehended  from  them, 
flic  reader,  trying  a  rlictoiical  description  by  too 
rigid  a  rule,  would  attempt  to  elicit  sense  by  imputing 
a  heresy,  and  would  conclude  that  they  meant  by  the 
External  or  Prophoric  Word  a  created  being,  made  in 
the  beginning  of  all  things  as  the  visible  emblem  of 
the  Internal  or  Endiathetic,  and  the  instrument  of 
God's  purposes  towards  His  creation.  This  Is  in  fact 
the  Arian  doctrine,  which  doubtless  availed  itself  in  its 
defence  of  the  declarations  of  incautious  piety ;  or 
rather  we  have  evidence  of  the  fact,  tliat  it  did  so  avail 
itself,  in  the  letter  of  Anus  to  Alexander,  and  from  the 
anathema  of  the  Niccne  Creed  directed  against  such 
as  said  that  "  the  Son  was  not  before  His  getmesis." 

Lastly,  the  orthodoxy  of  the  five  writers  in  question 
is  ascertained  by  a  careful  examination  of  the  pas- 
sages, which  give  ground  for  the  accusation.  Two  of 
these  shall  here  be  quoted  without  comment,  Theo- 
philus  then  says,  "God  having  His  own  Word  in  His 
womb,  begat  Him  together  with  His  Wisdom"  (that 
is.  His  Spirit),  "  uttering  them  prior  to  tlie  universe." 
"  He  had  this  Word  as  the  Minister  of  His  works,  and 
did  all  things  through  Him.  .  .  .  The  prophets  were 
^^■  existence  when  the  world  was  made ;  but  the 

KrL  iL  lip.  350  and  loS.] 

200  Variations  in  the  Statements,  [chap.  ii. 

Wisdom  of  God,  which  is  in  Him,  and  His  Holy  Word, 
who  is  ever  present  with  Him  7."  Elsewhere  he 
speaks  of  "  the  Word,  eternally  seated  in  the  heart  of 
God^;"  "for,"  he  presently  adds,  "before  anything 
was  made,  He  possessed  this  Counseller,  as  being  His 
mind  and  providence.  And  when  He  purposed  to  make 
all  that  He  had  deliberated  on.  He  begat  this  Word 
as  external  to  Him,  being  the  First-bom  antecedent 
to  the  whole  creation ;  not,  however.  Himself  losing 
the  Word  "  (that  is,  the  Internal),  "  but  begetting  it, 
and  yet  everlastingly  communing  with  it  9." 

In  like  manner  Hippolytus  in  his  answer  to  Noetus : 
— "God  was  alone,  and  there  was  no  being  coeval 

with  Him,  when  He  willed  to  create  the  world 

Not  that  He  was  destitute  of  reason  (the  Logos), 
wisdom  or  counsel.  They  are  all  in  Him,  He  was  all. 
At  the  time  and  in  the  manner  He  willed,  He  mani- 
fested His  Word  [Logos],  .  .  through  whom  He  made 
all  things.  .  .  Moreover  He  placed  over  them  His 
Word,  whom  He  begat  as  His  Counseller  and  Instm- 
ment ;  whom  He  had  within  Him,  invisible  to  creation, 
till  He  manifested  Him,  uttering  the  Word,  and 
begetting  Light  from  Light.  .  .  .  And  so  Another 
stood  by  Him,  not  as  if  there  were  two  Gods,  but  as 
though  Light  from  Light,  or  a  ray  from  the  Sun  ^" 

And  thus  closes  our   survey  of    Catholic   Ante- 
Nicene  theology. 

e)(ov  .  •  o  ^cos  TQV  cavrou  Xoyov  ivSiddeTov  €V  tols  ISlou 
(nrXdyxyoLS,  iyewrjcrev  avTov  fiera  r^g  iavTov  aotjiias,  i^epev^- 
aiJL€V09  (Psalm  xlv.  i),  irpb  tcov  oXcov  ...  6  ael  av/JLTrapttiv  aitrta, 

*  Tov  Xoyov  BunravTog  IvBulO^tov  iv  Kaphla  O€ovr 

*  iyhnrqcre  irpo<f>opiK6v, 

*  Vide  Bull,  Defens.  iii.  7,  8. 



It  remains  to  give  some  account  of  the  heretical  doc- 
trine, which  was  first  promulgated  within  the  Church 
by  Arius,  There  have  been  attempts  to  attribute  this 
heresy  to  Catholic  writers  previous  to  his  time ;  yet  its 
contemporaries  are  express  in  their  testimony  that  he 
was  the  author  of  it,  nor  can  anything  be  adduced 
from  the  Ante-Nicene  theology  to  countenance  such 
an  imputation.  Sozomen  expressly  says,  that  Arius 
was  the  first  to  introduce  into  the  Church  the  formula 
of  the  "out  of  nothing,"  and  the  "  once  He  was  not," 
that  is,  the  creation  and  the  non-eternity  of  the  Son 
of  God.  Alexander  and  Athanasius,  who  had  the 
amplest  means  of  information  on  the  subject,  confirm 
his  testimony  •.  That  the  heresy  existed  before  his 
lime  outside  the  Church,  may  be  true, — though  little 
is  known  on  the  subject ;  and  that  there  had  been 
certain  speculators,  such  as  Faulus  of  Samosata,  who 
were  simply  humanitarians,  is  undoubtedly  true ;  but 
they  did  not  hold  the  formal  doctrine  of  Arius,  that  an 
Angelic  being  had  been  exalted  into  a  God.     How- 

Soi.   I.   tj.    Thcud.   Hi9,   i.  i,     Alhan.   Deer.  Ni'^   IT.  ck   SfnC. 
Dionjrs.  6- 

^L  Sol 

^^M      Dionjrs. 

202  The  Arian  Heresy.  [cHiVP.  ii. 

ever,  he  and  his  supporters,  though  they  do  not  venture 
to  adduce  in  their  favour  the  evidence  of  former 
Catholics,  nevertheless  speak  in  a  general  way  of  their 
having  received  their  doctrines  from  others.  Arius 
too  himself  appears  to  be  only  a  partisan  of  the 
Eusebians,  and  they  in  turn  are  referable  to  Lucian  of 
Antioch,  who  for  some  cause  or  other  was  at  one  time 
under  excommunication.  But  here  we  lose  sight  of 
the  heresy ;  except  that  Origen  assails  a  doctrine, 
whose  we  know  not  2,  which  bears  a  resemblance  to 
it ;  nay,  if  we  may  trust  Ruffinus,  which  was  expressed 
in  the  very  same  heterodox  formulae,  which  Sozomen 
declares  that  Arius  was  the  first  to  preach  within  the 


Before  detailing,  nowever,  the  separate  character- 
istics of  his  heresy,  it  may  be  right  briefly  to  confront 
it  with  such  previous  doctrines,  in  and  out  of  the 
Church,  as  may  be  considered  to  bear  a  resemblance 
to  it. 

The  fundamental  tenet  of  Arianism  was,  that  the 
Son  of  God  was  a  creature,  not  born  of  the  Father, 
but,  in  the  scientific  language  of  the  times,  made  "out 
of  nothing  3  "  It  followed  that  He  only  possessed  a 
super-angelic  nature,  being  made  at  God's  good 
pleasure  before  the  worlds,  before  time,  after  the 
pattern  of  the  attribute  Logos  or  Wisdom,  as  existing 
in  the  Divine  Mind,  gifted  with  the  illumination  of  it, 
and  in  consequence  called  after  it  the  Word  and  the 

^  The  rj[v  ttotc  orr^  ovk  ^v  ;  it  might  beTertuUian  who  was  aimect  ait, 
especially  as  St.  Dionysius  of  Rome  denounces  the  doctrine  also.} 
*  e^  OVK  ovTiw  j  hence  the  Arians  were  called  EKucontii. 

^^cx.  v.]  The  Arian  Heresy.  203 

^^isdom,  nay  inheriting  the  title  itself  of  God  ;  and  at 
,  ^gth  united  to  a  human  body,  in  the  place  of  its  soul, 
^^  the  person  of  Jesus  Christ 

I  •    This  doctrine  resembled  that  of  the  five  philoso- 

r^J^i^ing  Fathers,  as  described  in  the  foregoing  Section, 

?^     far  as   this,  that  it  identified   the  Son  with   the 

^^cternal  or  Prophoric  Logos,  spoke  of  the  Divine 

^^gos  Itself  as  if  a  mere  internal  attribute,  and  yet 

<ected  to  maintain  a  connexion  between  the  Logos 

■"^d  the  Son.     Their  doctrine  differed  from  it,  inas- 

^^  Vich  as  they  believed,  that  He  who  was  the  Son  had 

-w^^r  been  in  personal  existence  as  the  Logos  in  the 

Other's  bosom,  whereas  Arianism  dated  His  personal 

-^istence  from  the  time  of  His  manifestation. 

2.  It  resembled  the  Eclectic  theology,  so  far  as  to 
aintain  that  the  Son  was  by  nature  separate  from 

>rid  inferior  to  the  Father  ;  and  again,  formed  at  the 
ather's  will.  It  differed  from  Eclecticism,  in  con- 
sidering the  Son  to  have  a  beginning  of  existence, 
^"^Vhereas  the  Platonists  held  Him,  as  they  held  the 
^^niverse,  to  be  an  eternal  Emanation,  and  the  Father's 
^^^ill  to  be  a  concomitant,  not  an  antecedent,  of  His 

3.  It  agreed  with  the  teaching  of  Gnostics  and 
^^^lanichees,  in  maintaining  the  Son's  essential  infe- 
:^iority  to  the  Father :  it  vehemently  opposed  them  in 
"t;heir  material  notions  of  the  Deity. 

4.  It  concurred  with  the  disciples  of  Paulus,  in 
considering  the  Intellectual  and  Ruling  Principle  in 

Christ,  the  Son  of  God,  to  be  a  mere  creature,  by 
nature  subject  to  a  moral  probation,  as  other  men,  and 
exalted  on  the  ground  of  His  obedience,  and  gifted, 
moreover,  with  a  heavenly  wisdom,  called  the  Logos, 

204  T/ie  Avian  Heresy.  [chap.  ii. 

which  guided  Him.  The  two  heresies  also  agreed,  as 
the  last  words  imply,  in  holding  the  Logos  to  be  an 
attribute  or  manifestation,  not  a  Person  4.  Paulus 
considered  it  as  if  a  voice  or  sound,  which  comes  and 
goes  ;  so  that  God  may  be  said  to  have  spoken  in 
Christ.  Arius  makes  use  of  the  same  illustration : 
"  Many  words  speaketh  God,"  he  says,  "  which  of 
them  is  manifested  in  the  flesh  5  ? "  He  differs  from 
Paulus,  in  holding  the  pre-existence  of  the  spiritual 
intelligence  in  Christ,  or  the  Son,  whom  he  considers 
to  be  the  first  and  only  creation  of  the  Father's 
Hand,  superangelic,  and  the  God  of  the  Christiar 

5.  Arianism  agreed  with  the  heresy  of  Sabellius,  in 
teaching  God  to  exist  only  in  one  Person,  and  His 
true  Logos  to  be  an  attribute,  manifested  in  the  Son, 
who  was  a  creature  6.  It  differed  from  Sabellianism, 
as  regards  the  sense  in  which  the  Logos  was  to  be 
accounted  as  existing  in  Christ.  The  Sabellian, 
lately  a  Patripassian,  at  least  insisted  much  upon  the 
formal  and  abiding  presence  of  the  Logos  in  Him. 
The  Arian,  only  partially  admitting  the  influence  of 
the  Divine  Logos  on  that  superangelic  nature,  which 
was  the  Son,  and  which  in  Christ  took  the  place  of  a 
soul,  nevertheless  gave  it  the  name  of  Logos,  and 
maintained  accordingly  that  the  incarnate  Logos  was 
not  the  true  Wisdom  and  Word  of  God,  which  was  one 
with  Him,  but  a  created  semblance  of  it. 

*  [When  the  Eternal  Word,  after  the  Nicene  Council,  was  defined  to 
have  a  personal  subsistence,  then  the  Samosatene  doctrine  would  become 
identical  with  Nestorianism.     Both  heresies  came  from  Antioch.} 

*  Athan.  Decret.  Nicen.  16. 

*  Athan.  Sent.  Dionys.  25, 

pSECT.  v.]  The  Arian  Heresy. 


Such  is  Arianism  in  its  relations  to  the  prin- 
cipal errors  of  its  time ;  and  of  these  it  was  most 
Opposed  to  the  Gnostic  and  Sabellian,  which,  as  we 
^hailsee,  it  did  not  scruple  to  impute  to  its  Catholic 
adversaries.  Towards  the  Catholics,  on  the  other 
d,  it  stood  thus :  it  was  willing  to  ascribe  to  the 
n  all  that  is  commonly  attributed  to  Almighty  God, 
^'s  name,  authority,  and  power ;  all  but  the  incom- 
"•unicable  nature  or  being  (usia),  that  is,  all  but  that 
"''lidi  alone  could  give  Him  a  right  to  these  preroga- 
*'"^es  of  divinity  in  a  real  and  literal  sense.  Now  to 
^'^rn  to  the  arguments  by  which  the  heresy  defended 
'^Sclf,  or  rather,  attacked  the  Church. 

ana  I 

^1   adv. 

^P    I.    Anus  commenced  his  heresy  thus,  as  Socrates 
^*lforms  us  : — "  (i)  If  the  Father  gave  birth  to  the  Son, 
He  who  was  born  has  an  origin  of  existence ;  (2)  there- 
fore once  the  Son  was  not;  (3)  therefore  He  is  created 
out  of  nothing 7."     It  appears,  then,  that  he  inferred  his 

'  Socr.  i.  5.  That  is,  the  Son,  as  such,  (i)  had  QpX^i'  tTap^EUH, 
(2)  riv  ore  oSk  V>  iz)  «^  "Sic  ovTm  ex«  T^i-  VTroorao-tv. 
The  argument  thus  staled  iti  the  history,  aiiswois  to  the  ftist  three  pro- 
powlionE  snathematiied  at  Nicaa,  which  are  as  followa,  the  figures  prefixed 
iTUjking  Ihe  correspondeacc  of  ea(^  with  Aliases  theses,  as  set  dLmn  by 
Socialts  i—ravt  Xxyovrai  (2)  on  ^  jtote  ore  olk  ^v,  (i)  Kai  wp\y 
ymTj^fai  ovk  ^v,  {3)  kul  on  1$  oIk  oitiuv  iyivfro,  (4)  rj  1$ 
iripa's  vffoorao-tuis  TJ  ouct'as  tin",  7]  Kritrroi',  {5)  ^  Tpnrruv  rj 
aXXotarrov  toc  uioc  row  Seou,  dfnfle/iaTt'^ft  ^  dyia  KaSoXui^ 
tiatXtjtria.  [The  fourth  of  these  propositions  is  the  denial  of  thu 
d^oouiriov.]  The  last,  viz.  the  mutability  of  the  Son,  was  probably  not 
one  ofArius'a  original  propsiiions,  but  forced  from  him  by  his  opponents 
31  a  necessary  consequence  of  his  doctrine.  He  retracts  it  in  his  letters 
to  Eusehius  and  Alexander,  who,  on  the  other  hand,  bear  testimony  to 
bii  having  avowccl  it. 

2o6  The  Arian  Heresy.         [chap.  ii. 

doctrine  from  the  very  meaning  of  the  word  "  Soul' 
which  is  the  designation  of  our  Lord  in  Scripture  ;  and 
so  far  he  adopted  a  fair  and  unexceptionable  mode  of 
reasoning.  Human  relations,  though  the  merest 
shadows  of  "  heavenly  things,"  yet  would  not  of 
course  be  employed  by  Divine  Wisdom  without 
fitness,  nor  unless  with  the  intention  of  instructing 
us.  But  what  should  be  the  exact  instruction  derived 
by  us  from  the  word  "  Son  "  is  another  question  S. 
The  Catholics  (not  to  speak  of  their  guidance  from 
tradition  in  determining  it)  had  taken  "  Son  "  in  its 
most  obvious  meaning ;  as  interpreted  moreover  by 
the  title  "  Only -begotten^'  and  as  confirmed  by  the 
general  tenor  of  Revelation.  But  the  Arians  selected 
as  the  sense  of  the  figure,  that  part  of  the  original 
import  of  the  word,  which,  though  undeniably  included 
in  it,  when  referred  to  us,  is  at  best  what  logicians 
call  a  property  deduced  from  the  essence  or  nature, 
not  an  element  of  its  essential  idea,  and  which  was 
especially  out  of  place,  when  the  word  was  used  to 
express  a  truth  about  the  Divine  Being.  That  a 
father  is  prior  to  his  son^  is  not  suggested,  though  it  is 
implied,  by  the  force  of  the  terms,  as  ordinarily  used  ; 
and  it  is  an  inference  altogether  irrelevant,  when  the 
inquiry  has  reference  to  that  Being,  from  our  notion 
of  whom  time  as  well  as  space  is  necessarily  excluded. 
It  is  fair,  indeed,  to  object  at  the  outset  to  the  word 
"  Father"  being  applied  at  all  in  its  primary  sense  to 
the  Supreme  Being ;  but  this  was  not  the  Arian 
ground,  which  was  to  argue  from,  not   against,   the 

•  "  [Non  recte  faciunt,  qui  vim  adhibent,  ut  sic  se  habcat  exemplum,  ut 
prototypum.  Non  enim  esset  jam  exemplum,  nisi  haberet  aliquid  dis* 
simile"     Leont.  Contr.  Nest.  i.  p.  539,  ed.  Canis.]) 

metaphor  employed.  Nor  was  even  this  the  extent  of 
perverseness  which  their  argument  evidences.  Let  it 
be  observed,  that  they  admitted  the  primary  sense  of 
the  word,  m  order  to  introduce  a  mere  secondary 
sense,  contending  that,  because  our  I-ord  was  to  be 
considered  really  as  a  Son,  therefore  in  fact  He  was 
no  Son  at  all.  In  the  first  proposition  Arius  assumes 
that  He  is  really  a  Son,  and  argues  as  if  He  were  ;  in 
the  third  he  has  arrived  at  the  conclusion  that  He  was 
created,  that  is,  no  Son  at  all,  except  in  a  secondary 
sense,  as  having  received  from  the  Father  a  sort  of 
adoptwH.  An  attempt  was  made  by  the  Arians  to 
smooth  over  their  inconsistency,  by  adducing  passages 
of  Scripture,  in  which  the  works  of  God  are  spoken  of 
as  births,— as  in  the  instance  from  Job,  "He  giveth 
birth  to  the  drops  of  dew."  But  this  is  obviously  an 
entirely  new  mode  of  defending  their  theory  of  a  divine 
adoption,  and  does  not  relieve  their  original  fault ; 
which  consisted  in  their  arguing  from  an  assumed 
analogy,  which  the  result  of  that  argument  destroyed. 
Tor,  if  He  be  the  Son  of  God,  no  otherwise  than  man 
is,  that  is,  by  adoption,  what  becomes  of  the  argument 
from  the  anterior  and  posterior  in  existence  ^  t  as  if 
'the  notion  of  adoption,  contained  in  it  any  necessary 
reference  to  the  nature  and  circumstances  of  the  two 
parties  between  whom  it  takes  place. 

2.  Accordingly,  the  Arians  were  soon  obliged  to 
betake  themselves  to  a  more  refined  argument.  They 
dropped  the  consideration  of  time,  and  withdrew  the 
inference  involving  it,  which  they  had  drawn  from  the 
literal  sense  of  the  word  "  Son."  Instead  of  this,  they 
'  [That  19,  an  adopted  son  is  not  necessarily  youngri,  but  might  b" 
ohkr,  than  the  person  adopting  him,] 



The  Anan  Heresy. 

maintained  that  the  relation  of  Father  and  Son,  as 
such,  in  wliatever  sense  considered,  could  not  b»ut 
imply  the  notion  of  voluntary  originator,  and  on  t:3ic 
other  hand,  of  a  free  gift  conferred  ;  and  that  the  &«>n 
must  be  essentially  inferior  to  Him,  from  whose  v^-^ill 
His  existence  resulted.  Their  argument  was  convey-"^ «d 
in  the  form  of  a  dilemma  : — "Whether  the  Fatft-acr 
gave  birth  to  the  Son  Tolais or  nolens ? "  TheCalBTO- 
lics  wisely  answered  them  by  a  counter  inquc  »y, 
which  was  adapted  to  silence,  without  countcnanci  ng, 
the  presumptuous  disputant.  Gregory  of  Nazian;^us 
asked  tliem,  "  Whether  the  Father  is  God,  volcns  or 
iiokiis?"  And  Cyril  of  Alexandria,  "Whether  H^  i* 
good,  compassionate,  merciful,  and  holy,  with  o^ 
against  His  choice  ?  For,  if  He  is  so  in  conseqiienccr  of 
choosing  it,  and  choice  ever  precedes  what  is  chQS.<:r>. 
these  attributes  once  did  not  exist  in  God."  Atha.  x^-^- 
sius  gives  substantially  the  same  answer,  solvi  «*£■ 
however,  rather  than  confuting,  the  objection.  "'M~  ^"^ 
Arians,"  he  says,  "  direct  their  view  to  the  (ro«/m</ri'/*-«^-'7 
of  willing,  instead  of  considering  the  more  import^^*-"'^ 
and  the  previous  question ;  for,  as  wtwillingrtai 
opposed  to  willing,  so  is  nature  prior  to  willi 
leads  the  way  to  it '." 

3,  Further : — the  Arians  attempted  to  draw  tl 
conclusion  as  to  the  dissimilarity  of  the  Father 
the  Son,  from  the  divine  attribute  of  the  "  Ingentr^  ^t^* 
(unborn  or  increate),  which,  as  I  have  already  said,  •^''^ 
acknowledged  on  all  hands  to  be  the  peculiar  attril»«-*'* 

■  vaaw.  II.  5.  f  9 !   VI.  s.  14.      p  iicnciaiio  nun  pntc 
naturw."     Ambros.  Incarn.  79.     'H   yirvrprK  ifivfffwt 

KiiiTfi  ^(XjJCTtius.     Damasc-  F.  O.  i,  8.  p.  ij.l.] 



SECT,  v.]  The  Avian  Heresy.  209 

of  the  Father,  while  it  had  been  the  philosophical  as 
well  as  Valentinian  appellation  of  the  Supreme  God. 
This  was  the  chief  resource  of  the  Anomoeans,  who  re- 
vived the  pure  Arian  heresy,  some  years  after  the 
<^eath  of  its  first  author.     Their  argument  has  been 
expressed  in  the  following  form  : — t-iat   "  it   is  the 
essence  of  the  Father  to  be  ingeneratey  and  of  the  Son 
^o  be  generate ;  but  unborn  and  born  cannot  be  the 
same  2."     The  shallowness,  as  well  as  the  miserable 
trifling  of  such   disputations   on   a   serious    subject, 
renders  them  unworthy  of  a  refutation. 

4.  Moreover,  they  argued  against  the  Catholic  sense 

^f  the  word  "  Son,'  from  what  they  conceived  to  be  its 

'^^ctteriality ;     and,     unwarrantably    contrasting    its 

primary  with  its  figurative  signification,  as  if  both 

^ould  not  be  preserved,  they  contended   that,  since 

^h^  word  must  be  figurative,  therefore  it  could  not 

^^tain  its  primary  sense,  but   must  be  taken  in  the 

^^c^ondary  sense  of  adoption, 

5.  Their  reasonings  (so  to  call  them)  had  now  con- 
^^^cted  them  thus  far: — to  maintain  that  our  Lord 
^^^-s  a  creature,  advanced,  after  creation,  to  be  a  Son 
^^  God.  They  did  not  shrink  from  the  inference 
^^^Viich  these  positions  implied,  viz.  that  He  had  been 
^'^t  on  trial  as  other  moral  agents,  and  adopted  on 
^^ing  found  worthy ;  that  His  holiness  was  not 
^^^sential,  but  acquired. 

6.  It  was  next  incumbent  on  them  to  explain  in 
"^^^"hat  sense  our  Lord  was  the  "  Only-begotten','  since 

*^l:iey  refused  to  understand  that  title  in  the  Catholic 
^  c^nse  of  the  Homoiision  or  consnbstantial.  Accordingly, 

•  Bcausobrc,  Hist.  Mafi'clit  il'u  7f  ^ 

2IO  The  Avian  Heresy.         fcnAP.  ii. 

while  pronouncing  the  divine  birth  to  be  a  kind  of 
creation,  or  an  adoption,  they  attempted  to  hide  the 
offensiveness  of  the  heretical  doctrine  by  the  variety 
and  dignity  of  the  prerogatives,  by  which  they  distin- 
guished the  Son  from  other  creatures.  They  declared 
that  He  was,  strictly  speaking,  the  only  creature  of 
God,  as  being  alone  made  immediately  by  Him  ;  and 
hence  He  was  called  Only-begotten^  as  "bom  alone 
from  Him  alone  3,"  whereas  all  others  were  made 
through  Him,  as  the  instrument  of  Divine  Power ;  and 
that  in  consequence  He  was  "a  creature,  but  not  as 
being  one  of  the  creatures,  a  birth  or  production,  but 
not  as  being  one  of  the  produced  ^ ;"  that  is,  to  express 
their  sentiment  with  something  of  the  same  ambiguity, 
"  He  was  not  a  creature  like  other  creatures."  An- 
other ambiguity  of  language  followed.  The  idea  of 
time  depending  on  that  of  creation,  they  were  able  to 
grant  that  He,  who  was  employed  in  forming  all 
things,  therefore  brought  time  itself  into  being,  and  was 

.  "  before  all  time  ; "  not  granting  thereby  that  He  was 
everlasting,  but  meaning  that  He  was  brought  into 
existence  "  timelessly,"  independent  of  that  succession 

.  of  second  causes  (as  they  are  called),  that  elementary 
system,  seemingly  self-sustained  and  self-renovating, 
to  the  laws  of  which  creation  itself  may  be  considered 
as  subjected. 

7.  Nor,  lastly,  had  they  any  difficulty  either  in 
allowing  or  in  explaining  away  the  other  attributes  of 
divinity  ascribed  to  Christ  in  Scripture.    They  might 

•  Pearson  on  the  Creed,  vol.  ii.  p.  148.    Suicer.  Thes.  verb,  ftovoycn;?. 
KTUT^,  aXK  ov\  a>s  €v  Twv  KTCor/jLaTiov  yevvrjfia,  aXX*  ov;^  a>« 
€V  Twv  y€y€vvr)fiiv(i)v. 

^ECT.  V.J  The  Aridn  Heresy.  ail 

safely  confess  Him  to  be  perfect  God,  one  with  God, 
the  object  of  worship,  the  author  of  g'ood  ;  still  with 
(he  reserve,  that  sacred  appellations  belonged  to  Him 
only  in  the  same  general  sense  in  which  they  are 
sometimes  accidentally  bestowed  on  the  faithful 
servants  of  God,  and  without  interfering  with  the 
prerogatives  of  the  One,  Eternal,  Self-existing  Cause 
ofall  things  5. 

This  account  of  the  Arian  theology  may  be  suitablj 
illustrated  by  some  of  the  original  documents  of  the 
controversy.  Here,  then,  shall  follow  two  letters  of 
Arius  himself,  an  extract  from  his  Thalia,  a  letter  of 
Eusebius  of  Nicomedia,  and  parts  of  the  encyclical 
Epistle  of  Alexander  of  Alexandria,  in  justification 
of  his  excommunication  of  Arius  and  his  followers  ^. 

I.  "To  his  most  dear  Lord,  Eusebius,  a  man  of 
God,  faithful  and  orthodox,  Arius,  the  man  unjustly 
persecuted  by  tlie  Pope  Alexander  for  the  all-con- 
quering truth's  sake,  of  which  thou  too  art  a  champion, 
sends  health  in  the  Lord.  As  Ammonius,  my  father, 
was  going  to  Nicomedia,  it  seemed  becoming  to 
address  this  through  him  ;  and  withal  to  represent 
to  that  deep-seated  affection  which  thou  bearest 
towards  the  brethren  for  the  sake  of  God  and  His 

*  II  may  be  added  that  the  chief  lexis,  wliich  (he  Arians  adduced  in 
cou[rovei3y  wcie,  Pmv.  viii.  21.  Man.  lii.  i;  j  11.  jj.  Maik  >iii.  31. 
John  V.  19  ;  xiv.  2g.  r  Cor.  xv.  iS.  Col.  i.  15  ;  and  glheia  which  refci 
bt  our  Lord's  metiiaturial  offlc;  (Pelav.  ii.  i,  &c.  Theod.  Hist.  i.  14). 
Bui  it  is  obvious,  that  the  strength  uf  iheir  cause  did  uoc  lie  in  ilie  teil  □( 


r.  HisL  i.  4—6.     Socr.  i.  6.     Athan. 
Epiplian.  Hci.  Iiii.  6,  7.     Hitat.  Tiiii 

2 1 2  The  Arian  Heresy.         [chap,  ir- 

Christ,  how  fiercely  the  bishop  assaults  and  drives  us, 
leaving  no  means  untried  in  his  opposition.   At  lengtl:^ 
he  has  driven  us  out  of  the  city,  as  men  without  God  , 
for  dissenting  from  his  public  declarations,  that,  '  A^ 
God  is  eternal,  so  is  His  Son:  where  the  Father,  there 
the  Son ;  the  Son  co-exists  in  God  without  a  begin- 
ning (or  birth) :  ever  generate,  an  ingenerately-gen- 
erate  ;  that  neither  in  idea,  nor  by  an  instant  of  time, 
does  God  precede  the  Son  ;  an  eternal  God,  an  eternal 
Son  ;    the  Son  is  from  God  Himself/     Since  then, 
Euscbius,  thy  brother  of  C?esarea,  Theodotus,  Paulinus, 
&c.  .  .  .  and  all  the  Bishops  of  the  East  declare  that 
God  exists  without  origin  before  the  Son,  they  are 
made  anathema   by  Alexander's   sentence ;    all   but 
Philogonius,  Hellanicus,  and  Macarius,  heretical,  ill- 
grounded  men,  who  say,  one  that  He  is  an  utterance, 
another  an  offspring,  another  co-ingenerate.     These 
blasphemies  we  cannot  bear  even  to  hear  ;  no,  not  if 
the  heretics  should   threaten  us  with  ten   thousand 
deaths.    What,  on  the  other  hand,  are  our  statements 
and  opinions,  our  past  and  present  teaching }  that  the 
Son  is  not  ingenerate,  nor  in  any  way  a  part  of  the 
Ingenerate,  nor  made  of  any  subject-matter  7 ;    but 
that,  by  the  will  and  counsel  of  God,  He  subsisted 
before  times  and   ages,  perfect   God,  Only-begotten, 
unchangeable ;   and   that  before  this  generation,  or 

t  The  Greek  of  most  of  these  scientific  expressions  has  been  given  • 
of  the  rest  it  is  as  follows  :— men  without  God,  Q.Bkov%;  without  a 
beginning  or  birth,  aycu/ijrws  ;  ever-generate,  dcty €1/7/5;  ingenerately- 
generate,  ayewrfjoycvq^ ;  an  utterance,  ipvyi^  (Psalm  xlv.  i);  ofT- 
spring,  'n-pofioXrj;  co  ingenerate,  avvaycwrjTov;  of  any  subject- 
matter,  i(  xnroK€iiJL€i/ov  tlvo*;. 

lAe  ArioH  Heresy.  2 1 3 

I,  or  determination,  or  establishment  S,  He  was 
not,  for  He  is  not  ingenerate.  And  we  are  persecuted 
for  saying.  The  Son  has  an  origin,  but  God  is  u 
nate;  for  this  we  are  under  persecution,  and 
lying  that  He  is  out  of  nothing,  inasmuch  as  He  is 
"flier  part  of  God,  nor  of  any  subject-matter, 
hcrefore  we  are  persecuted ;  the  rest  thou  knowest 
Tpray  that  thou  be  strong  in  the  Lord,  remembering 
our  afflictions,  feilow-Lucianist,  tnily  named   Euse- 


2.  The  second  letter  is  written  in  the  name  of 
himself  and  his  partisans  of  the  Alexandrian  Church ; 
who,  finding  themselves  excommunicated,  had  with- 
drawn to  Asia,  where  they  had  a  field  for  prop^ating 
their  opinions.  It  was  composed  under  the  direction 
of  Eusebius  of  Nicomedia,  and  is  far  more  temperate 
and  cautious  than  the  fonner. 

"  To  Alexander,  our  blessed  Pope  and  Bishop,  the 
Priests  and  Deacons  send  health  in  the  Lord.  Our 
hereditary  faith,  which  thou  too,  blessed  Pope,  hast 
taught  us,  is  this : — We  believe  in  One  God,  alone  in- 
generate,  alone  everlasting,  alone  unoriginate.  alone 
truly  God,  alone  immortal,  alone  wise,  alone  good, 
alone  sovereign,  alone  judge  of  all,  ordainer,  and  dis- 
penser, unchangeable  and  unalterable,  just  and  good, 
of  the  Law  and  the  Prophets,  and  of  the  New  Co- 
\-enant  We  believe  that  this  God  gave  birth  to  the 
Only-begotten  Son  before  age-long  times,  through 
whom  He  has  made  those  ages  themselves,  and  all 
tilings  else  ;  that  Hegenerated  Him,  not  in  semblance^ 

These  words  are  selected  hjr  Alius,  a?  bd 

:Heb.  i.  J.    Rom.  i.  4.     Ptot.  tiiI.  ;i,  ij.] 

.  the  pioiu,  01  rather,  ihe  onhodm.] 

ig  found  ia  Scripiuiej 

214  T lie  Arian  Heresy^         [chap,  li, 

but  in  truth,  giving  Him  a  real  subsistence  (or  hypos^ 
tasis),  at  His  own  will,  so  as  to  be  unchangeable  and 
unalterable,  God's  perfect  creature,  but  not  as  other 
creatures,  His  production,  but  not  as  other  productions ; 
nor  as  Valentinus  maintained,  an  offspring  (probole)  ; 
nor  again,  as  Manichaeus,  a  consubstantial  part ;  nor, 
as  Sabellius,  a  Son-Father,  which  is  to  make  two  out 
of  one  ;  nor,  as  Hicracas,  one  torch  from  another,  or  a 
flame  divided  into  two  ;  nor,  as  if  He  were  previously 
in  being,  and  afterwards  generated  or  created  again  to 
-Jie  a  Son,  a  notion  condemned  by  thyself,  blessed 
Pope,  in  full  Church  and  among  the  assembled 
Clergy ;  but,  as  we  affirm,  created  at  the  will  of  God 
before  times  and  before  ages,  and  having  life  and 
being  from  the  Father,  who  gave  subsistence  as  to 
Him,  so  to  His  glorious  perfections.  For,  when  the 
Father  gave  to  Him  the  inheritance  of  all  things,  He 
did  riot  thereby  deprive  Himself  of  attributes,  which 
are  His  ingenerately,  who  is  the  Source  of  all  things. 

"  So  there  are  Three  Subsistences  (or  Persons) ; 
and,  whereas  God  is  the  Cause  of  all  things,  and 
therefore  unoriginate  simply  by  Himself,  the  Son  on 
the  other  hand,  born  of  the  Father  time-apart,  and 
created  and  established  before  all  periods,  did  not 
exist  before  He  was  born,  but  being  born  of  the 
Father  time-apart,  was  brought  into  substantive 
existence  (subsistence).  He  alone  by  the  Father  alone. 
For  He  is  not  eternal,  or  co-eternal,  or  co-ingenerate 
with  the  Father ;  nor  hath  an  existence  together  with 
the  Father,  as  if  there  were  two  ingenerate  Origins ;  but 
God  is  before  all  things,  as  being  a  Monad,  and  the 
Origin  of  all  ; — and  therefore  before  the  Son  also,  as 
indeed  we  have  learned  from  thee  in    thy  public 




preaching'.  Inasmuch  then  as  it  is  from  God  that  lie 
hath  His  being,  and  His  glorious  perfections,  and  His 
life,  and  His  charge  of  all  things,  for  this  reason  God 
is  His  Origin,  as  being  His  God  and  before  Him.  As 
to  such  phrases  as  '  from  Him,'  and  '  from  the  womb,' 
and '  issued  forth  from  the  Father,  and  am  come,'  if 
they  be  understood,  as  they  are  by  some,  to  denote  a 
part  of  the  consubstantial,  and  a  probole  (offspringj, 
then  the  Father  will  be  of  a  compound  nature,  and 
divisible,  and  changeable,  and  corporeal  ;  and  thus, 
as  far  as  their  words  go,  the  incorporeal  God  will  be 
subjected  to  the  properties  of  matter.  I  pray  for  thy 
health  in  the  Lord,  blessed  Pope'." 

3.  About  the  same  time  Arius  wrote  his  Thalia,  or 
song  for  banquets  and  merry-makings,  from  which  the 
following  is  extracted.  He  begins  thus : — "According 
to  the  faith  of  God's  elect,  who  know  God,  holy 
children,  sound  in  their  creed,  gifted  with  the  Holy 
Spirit  of  God,  I  have  received  these  things  from  the 
partakers  of  wisdom,  accomplished,  taught  of  God, 
and  altc^ethcr  wise.  Along  their  track  I  have  pur- 
sued my  course  with  like  opinions, — I,  the  famous 
among  men,  the  much-suffering  for  God's  glory  ;  and, 
taught  of  God,  I  have  gained  wisdom  and  know- 
ledge." After  this  exordium,  he  proceeds  to  declare, 
"that  God  made  the  Son  the  origin  (or  beginning)  of 

re  age-]an|r  pniods,  ^pi  ypwaso  aimUa/i  gi*ing  Him  a  ttsA 
lOCf  VKOvrifTarra. ;  Sou-Faiher,  vunroropa  {Vide  Aih.  Tr.  p, 
id  p>  S14. 0  i  aba  Didym.  de  Triii.  iii.  18} ;  gave  lubiiiuence.  a* 
K)  n>  I  tis  glucious  perfccDons,  Ta«  ho^tK  UWvKtia  1  ^avrm 
Inre  Snhsijtences,  rpoi  xnrotniatK ;  born  limc-apan.  ^XP"^ 
itAk  ;  of  a  lorrpounil  nalucc,  irivdrTof.  The  w>U  W  which 
n  ace  Vs.  ci.  3,  and  Jnhn  i*i.  i8. 

2i6  The  Ariau-  Heresy.  [chap, 

creation,  being  Himself  unoriginate,  and  adopt 
Him  to  be  His  Son  ;  who,  on  the  other  hand,  has  : 
property  of  divinity  in  His  own  Hypostasis,  not  bci^ 
equal,  nor  consubstantial  with  Him  ;  that  God 
invisible,  not  only  to  the  creatures  created  through  t 
Son,  but  to  the  Son  Himself;  that  there  is  a  Trinii 
but  not  with  an  equal  glory,  the  Hypostases  beii 
incommunicable  with  each  other,  One  infinitdy  m« 
glorious  than  the  other  ;  that  the  Father  is  foreign 
substance  to  the  Son,  as  existing  imoriginate;  th 
by  God's  will  the  Son  became  Wisdom,  Power, 
Spirit,  the  Truth,  the  Word,  the  Glory,  and  the  Imaj 
of  God  ;  that  the  Father,  as  being  Almighty,  is  ab 
to  give  existence  to  a  being  equal  to  the  Son,  thoug 
not  superior  to  Him  ;  that,  from  the  time  that  He  w. 
made,  being  a  mighty  God,  He  has  hymned  tl 
praises  of  His  Superior;  that  He  cannot  investiga. 
His  Father's  nature,  it  being  plain  that  the  originati 
cannot  comprehend  the  unoriginate  ;  nay,  that 
does  not  know  His  own^." 

4.  On  t!ie  receipt  of  tlie  letter  from  Arius,  which 
the  first  document  here  exhibited,  Eusebius  of  Nice 
media  addressed  a  letter  to  PauHnus  of  Tyre,  of  whic 
the  following  is  an  extract : — "We  have  neither  hear 
of  two  Ingenerates,  nor  of  One  divided  into  twf^  sufc 
jected  to  any  material  affection  ;  but  of  One  Ingent 
rate,  and  one  generated  by  Him  really  ;  not  from  Hi 
substance,  not  partaking  of  the  nature  of  the  Ingene 
rate  at  all,  but   made  altogether  other  than  He  t 

•  InooramunicaUe,  ivnr^orroi,  (this  n  in  opposition  to  Ihe  •V^t" 
/"JiTK,   or  CO- inherence)  ;   foccign  la  Eubstance  (ivo^  •rar'  oCmoM 

;"v»siiga(e.  iiiyyiaa'tt. 

The  Ariau  heresy. 


I  nature  and  in  power,  though  made  after  the  perftct 
f  Kktness  of  the  character  and  excellence  of  His  Maker. 
,  But,  if  He  were  of  Him  in  the  sense  of  'from 
r  Him,'  as  if  a  part  of  Him,  or  from  the  effluence  of  H  is 
substance^,  He  would  not  be  spoken  of  (in  Scripture) 
as  created  or  established  .  .  .  for  what  exists  as  being 
from  the  Ingenerate  ceases  to  be  created  or  estab- 
lished, as  being  from  its  origin  ingenerate.  But,  if 
His  being  called  generate  suggests  the  idea  that  He 
is  made  out  of  tlie  Father's  substance,  and  lias  from 
Him  a  sameness  of  nature,  we  know  that  not  of  Him 
alone  does  Scripture  use  the  word  '  generate,'  but  also 
of  things  altogether  unlike  the  Father  in  nature.  For 
it  says  of  men,  '  I  have  begotten  sons  and  exalted 
them,  and  they  have  set  Me  at  nought;'  and,  'Thou 
hast  left  the  God  who  begat  thee ;'  and  in  other 
instances,  as  'Who  has  given  birth  to  the  drops  of 
dew?'  .  .  .  Nothing  is  of  His  substance;  but  all 
things  are  made  at  His  will." 

J.  Alexander,  in  his  public  accusation  of  Arius  and 
his  party  to  Alexander  of  Constantinople,  writes  thus ; 
— "  Tiiey  say  that  once  the  Son  of  God  waa  not, 
and  that  He,  who  before  had  no  existence,  was  at 
length  made,  made  such,  when  He  was  made,  an 
any  other  man  is  by  nature.  Numbering  the  Son 
of  God  among  created  things,  they  are  but  con- 
sistent in  adding  that  He  is  of  an  alterable  nature, 
capable  of  virtue  and  vice.  .  .  .  When  it  is  urged  on 
them  that  the  Saviour  differs  from  others,  called  eoni< 
of  God,  by  the  unchangeablcness  of  Hi«  nature, 
stripping  off  all   r^erence,  they  answer,  that   God, 

*  Ccnct.iiEiI,  yf/'n-i'n 

^-.u,  i'. 

I  ^i8  Tfte  Arian  Heresy. 


^^P    foreknowing  and  foreseeing  His  obedience,  chose  Hire' 
^H     out  of  all  creatures  ;  chose  Him,  I  say,  not  as  possess- 
es    ing  aught  by  nature  and  prerogative  above  the  other 
^H     (since,  as  they  say,  there  is  no  Son  of  God  by  nature)._ 
^H     nor  bearing  any  peculiar  relation  towards  God  ;  but,  a^S 
^H     being,  as  well  as  others,  of  an  alterable  nature,  antfS 
^H     preserved  from  falling  by  the  pursuit  and  exercise  ofr^ 
^H     virtuous  conduct ;  so  that,  if  Paul  or  Peter  had  made — 

^H     such  strenuous  progress,  they  would  have  gained  a_ 

^H     sonship  equal  to  His." 

^H  In   another   letter,   which  was   addressed    to    the— 

^P  Churches,  ho  says,  "It  is  their  doctrine,  that  'God 
was  not  always  a  Father',  that  '  the  Word  of  God  has- 
not  always  existed,  but  was  made  out  of  nothing ;  for~ 
the  self-existing  God  made  Him,  who  once  was  not. 
out  oT  what  once  was  not.  .  .  ,  Neither  is  He  like  the 
Father  in  substance,  nor  is  He  the  true  and  natural 

s  of  the  Father,  nor  His  true  Wisdom,  but  one  of" 
His  works  and  creatures  ;  and  He  is  catachrestically 
the  Word  and  Wisdom,  inasmuch  as  He  Himself  was 
made  by  the  proper  Logos  of  God,  and  by  that 
Wisdom  which  is  in  God,  by  which  God  made  all 
things,  and  Him  in  the  number.  Hence  He  is 
mutable  and  alterable  by  nature,  as  other  rational 
beings  ;  and  He  is  foreign  and  external  to  God's  sub- 
stance, being  excluded  from  it.  He  was  made  for 
our  sakes,  in  order  that  God  might  create  us  by  Him 
as  by  an  instrument ;  and  He  would  not  have  had 
subsistence,  had  not  God  willed  our  making.'  Some 
one  asked  them,  if  the  Word  of  God  could  change,  as 
the  devil  changed  ?  They  scrupled  not  to  answer. 
'Certainly,  He  can*.'" 

*  Like  in  substance,  5^a(os  kut'  niVoiv  [This,  as  «c  sh.ill  sec  aftw- 
warils.  in  the  I  lainntlsian,  Ihe  symbol  orihc  Kuscbiant  or  S^ml-VUna], 



;  Arian  Heresy, 

More  than  enough  has  now  been  said  in  explanation 
of  a  controversy,  the  very  sound  of  which  must  be 
painful  to  any  one  who  has  a  loving  faith  in  the 
Divinity  of  the  Son.  Yet  so  it  has  been  ordered,  that 
He  who  was  once  lifted  up  to  the  gaze  of  the  world, 
and  hid  not  His  face  from  contumely,  has  again  been 
subjected  to  rude  scrutiny  and  dishonour  in  the  pro- 
mulgation of  His  religion  to  the  world.  And  His 
true  followers  have  been  themselves  obliged  in  His 
defence  to  raise  and  fix  their  eyes  boldly  on  Him,  as 
if  He  were  one  of  themselves,  dismissing  the  natural 
reverence,  which  would  keep  them  ever  at  His  feet. 
The  subject  may  be  dismissed  with  the  following 
remarks : — 

1.     First,  it  is  obvious  to  notice  the  unscriptural 
character  of  the  arguments  on  which  the  heresy  wa; 
founded.     It  is  true  that  the  Arians  did  not  neglect  to 
support  their  case  from  such  detached  portions  of  the 
Inspired  Volume  as  suited  their  purpose  ;  but  still  it 
.  never  be  said  that  they  showed  that  earnest  desire 
of  sacred  truth,  and  careful  search  into  its  documents, 
'  which  alone  mark  the  Christian  inquirer.     The  ques- 
tion is  not  merely  whether  they  confined  themselves 
t  to  the  language  of  Scripture,  but  \vhether  they  began 
I'with  the  study  of  it.      Doubtless,  to  forbid  in  contro- 
[  versy  the  use  of  all  words  but  those  which  actually 
I  occur  in  Scripture,  is  a  superstition,  an  encroachment 
[  on  Scripture  liberty,  and  an  impediment  to  freedom 

muublc  and  ali;r,ible,  t/iititos  kui  dXAotun'os;  excluded,  A.^T(tI)^otv^'T• 

220  The  Arian  Heresy.  [chap,  ii, 

of  thought  ;  and  especially  unreasonable,  considering 
that  a  traditional  system  of  theology,  consistent  with, 
but  independent  of.  Scripture,  has  existed  in  the 
Church  from  the  Apostolic  age.  "Why  art  thou  in 
that  excessive  slavery  to  the  letter,"  says  Gregory 
Nazianzen,  "and  employest  a  Judaical  wisdom,  dwel- 
ling upon  syllables,  while  letting  slip  realities  ? 
Suppose,  on  thy  saying  twice  five,  or  twice  seven,  1 
were  to  understand  thence  ten  or  fourteen  ;  or,  if  I 
spoke  of  a  man,  when  thou  hadst  named  an  animal 
rational  and  mortal,  should  I  in  that  case  appear  to 
thee  to  trifle?  How  could  I  so  appear,  in  merely 
expressing  your  own  meaning  5  ?  "  But,  inasmuch  as 
this  liberty  was  an  evangelical  privilege,  which  might 
be  allowed  to  the  Arian  disputants,  on  the  other  hand 
it  was  a  dangerous  privilege  also,  ever  to  be  subjected 
to  a  profound  respect  for  the  sacred  text,  a  cautious 
adherence  to  the  whole  of  the  doctrine  therein  con- 
tained, and  a  regard  also  for  those  received  statements, 
which,  though  not  given  to  us  as  inspired,  probably 
are  derived  from  inspired  teachers.  Now  the  most 
liberal  admission  which  can  be  made  in  behalf  of  the 
Arians,  is,  to  grant  that  they  did  not  in  controversy 
throw  aside  the  authority  of  Scripture  altogether; 
that  is,  proclaim  themselves  unbelievers ;  for  it  is 
evident  that  they  took  only  just  so  much  of  it  as 
would  afford  them  a  basis  for  erecting  their  system  of 
heresy  by  an   abstract  logical   process.      The  mere 

.  *  Petav.  iv.  5,  §  6.  [Athanasius  ever  exalts  the  theological  sense  over 
the  words,  whether  sacred  or  ecclesiastical,  which  are  its  vehicle,  and  this 
evHsn  to  the  apparent  withholding  of  the  symbol  o/Jioov(nov,  Vide  OraL 
ii.  3,  and  Ath.  Tr.  vol.  i.,  notes  pp.  163,  212,  214,  231,  &c] 


The  Ainan  Heresy. 

words  "Father  and  Son,"  "birth,' 

orighi,"  &c.,  were 
all  that  they  postulated  of  revealed  authority  for  their 
ailment ;  they  professed  to  do  all  the  rest  for  them- 
selves.    The  meaning  of  these  terms  in  their  context, 
the  illustration  which  they  afford  to  each  other,  and, 
much  more,  the  divine  doctrine  considered   as   one 
undivided  message,  variously  exhibited  and  dispersed 
the  various  parts  of  Scripture,  were  excluded  from 
E   consideration   of  controversialists,  who   thought 
lat  truth  was  gained  by  disputing  instead  of  investi- 

2.  Next,  it  will  be  observed  that,  throughout  their 
discussions,  they  assumed  as  an  axiom,  that  there 
could  be  no  mystery  in  the  Scripture  doctrine  respect- 
ing the  nature  of  God.  In  this,  indeed,  they  did  but 
follow  the  example  of  the  contemporary  spurious 
theologies  ;  though  their  abstract  mode  of  reasoning 
from  the  mere  force  of  one  or  two  Scripture  terms, 
necessarily  forced  them  more  than  other  heretics  into 
the  use  and  avowal  of  the  principle.  The  SabclHan, 
to  avoid  mystery,  denied  the  distinction  of  Persons  in 
the  Divine  Nature.  Faulus,  and  afterwards  Apoliina- 
ris,  for  the  same  reason,  denied  the  existence  of  two 
Intelligent  Principles  at  once,  the  Word  and  the 
human  soul,  in  the  Person  of  Christ.  7"he  Arians 
adopted  both  errors.  Yet  what  is  a  mystery  in 
doctrine,  but  a  difficulty  or  inconsistency  in  the  intel- 
lectual expression  of  it  ?  And  what  reason  is  there 
for  supposing,  that  Revelation  addresses  itself  to  the 
intellect,  except  so  far  as  intellect  is  necessary  for  con- 
veying and  fixing  its  truths  on  the  heart  ?  Why  are 
we  not  content  to  take  and  use  what  is  given  us,  with- 
out asking  questions  ?     The  Catholics,  on  the  other 

^^     we  not 

222  The  Arian  Heresy.         [chap.  ii. 

hand,  pursued  the  intellectual  investigation  of  the 
doctrine,  under  the  guidance  of  Scripture  and  Tra- 
dition, merely  as  far  as  some  immediate  necessity 
called  for  it ;  and  cared  little,  though  one  mode  of 
expression  seemed  inconsistent  with  another.  Thus, 
they  developed  the  notion  of  *'  stcbstance  "  against  the 
Pantheists,  of  the  '^Hypostatic  Word''  against  the 
Sabellians,  of  the  "  Internal  Word "  to  meet  the 
imputation  of  Ditheism ;  still  they  did  not  use  these 
formulae  for  any  thing  beyond  shadows  of  sacred  truth, 
symbols  witnessing  against  the  speculations  into 
which  the  unbridled  intellect  fell. 

Accordingly,  they  were  for  a  time  inconsistent  with 
each  other  in  the  minor  particulars  of  their  doctrinal 
statements,  being  far  more  bent  on  opposing  error, 
than  on  forming  a  theology : — inconsistent,  that  is, 
before  the  experience  of  controversy  and  the  voice  of 
tradition  had  detached  them  from  less  accurate  or 
advisable  expressions,  and  made  them  correct,  or  at 
least  compare  and  adjust  their  several  declarations. 
Thus,  some  said  that  there  was  but  one  hypostasis^ 
meaning  substance^  in  God  ;  others  three  hypostases, 
meaning  Subsistences  or  Persons  ;  and  some  spoke  of 
one  usia^  meaning  substance,  while  others  spoke  of 
more  than  one  ttsia.  Some  allowed,  some  rejected, 
the  terms  probole  and  homoilsion,  according  as  they 
were  guided  by  the  prevailing  heresy  of  the  day,  and 
by  their  own  judgment  how  best  to  meet  it.  Some 
spoke  of  the  Son  as  existing  from  everlasting  in  the 
Divine  Mind;  others  impHed  that  the  Logos  was 
everlasting,  and  became  the  Son  in  time.  Some 
asserted  that  He  was  unoriginate,  others  denied  it. 
Some,  when  interrogated  by  heretics,  taught  that  He 

SKT.  v.]  Tke- drian  Heresy.  ii-i^ 

was  bom  of  the  Father  at  the  Father's  will ;  others, 

from  His  nature,  not  His  will ;  others,  neither  with 

His  willing  nor  not  willing^.      Some  declared  that 

God  was   in   number  Three  ;    others,  that   He  was 

"Umerically  One  ;  while  to  others  it  perhaps  appeared 

"lore  philosophical  to  exclude  the  idea   of  number 

altogether,    in    discussions     about    that    Mysterious 

Nature,   which   is    beyond    comparison    with    itself, 

^^'hether  viewed  as  Three  or  One,  and  neither  falls 

^nder  nor  involves  any  conceivable  species^. 

In  all  these  various  statements,  the  object  is  clear 
a-nd  unexceptionable,  being  merely  that  of  protesting 
^tid  practically  guarding  against  dangerous  deductions 
from  the  Scripture  doctrine ;  and  the  problem  implied 
in  ail  of  them  is,  to  determine  how  this  end  may  best 
be  effected.  There  are  no  signs  of  an  intellectual 
Curiosity  in  the  tenor  of  these  Catholic  expositions, 
prying  into  things  not  seen  as  yet ;  nor  of  an  ambition 
to  acccunt  for  the  representations  of  the  truth  given 
us  in  the  sacred  writings.  But  such  a  temper  is  the 
very  characteristic  of  the  Arian  disputants.  They 
insisted  on  taking  the  terms  of  Scripture  and  of  the 
urch  for  more  than  they  signified,  and  expected 
;ir  opponents  to  admit  inferences  altogether  foreign 
the  theological  sense  in  which  they  were  really 
used.  Hence,  they  sometimes  accused  the  orthodox 
of  heresy,  sometimes  of  self-contradiction.  The 
Fathers  of  the  Church  have  come  down  to  us 
loaded  with  the  imputation  of  the  strangest  errors, 
merely  because  they  united  trutJis,  which  heresies  only 


•  ji."i»,T,ni 

224  The  A rian  Heresy.  [chai».  ll. 

shared  among  themselves  ;  nor  have  writers  been 
wanting  in  modern  times,  from  malevolence  or  care- 
lessness, to  aggravate  these  charges.  The  mystery  of 
their  creed  has  been  converted  into  an  evidence  of 
concurrent  heresies.  To  believe  in  the  actual  Incar- 
nation of  the  Eternal  Wisdom,  has  been  treated,  not 
as  orthodoxy,  but  as  an  Ariano-Sabellianism^.  To 
believe  that  the  Son  of  God  was  the  Logos,  was 
Sabellianism ;  to  believe  that  the  pre-existent  Logos 
was  the  Son  of  God,  was  Valentinianism.  Gregory  of 
Neo-Caesarea  was  called  a  Sabellian,  because  he  spoke 
of  one  substance  in  the  Divine  Nature  ;  he  was  called 
a  forerunner  of  Arius,  because  he  said  that  Christ  was 
a  creature.  Origen,  so  frequently  accused  of  Arianism, 
seemed  to  be  a  Sabellian,  when  he  said  that  the  Son 
was  the  Auto-aletheia,  the  Archetypal  Truth.  Athen- 
agoras  is  charged  with  Sabellianism  by  the  very  writer 
(Petau),  whose  general  theory  it  is  that  he  was  one  of 
those  Platonizing  Fathers  who  anticipated  Arius  9. 
Alexander,  who  at  the  opening  of  the  controversy, 
was  accused  by  Arius  of  Sabellianizing,  has  in  these 
latter  times  been  detected  by  the  flippant  Jortin  to  be 
an  advocate  of  Semi-Arianism  i,  which  was  the  peculiar 
enemy  and  assailant  of  Sabellianism  in  all  its  forms. 
The  celebrated  word,  komousiony  has  not  escaped  a 
similar  contrariety  of  charges.  Arius  himself  ascribes 
it  to  the  Manichees  ;  the  Semi-Arians  at  Ancyra 
anathematize  it,  as  Sabellian.     It  is  in  the  same  spirit 

*  ["  Eorum  error  veritati  testimonium  dicit,  ct  in  consona  perfidorum 
sententia  in  unum  rcctc  fidei  moduIn»r  conclnuut."  Vigil.  Thaps.  contr. 
Eut.  ii.  init.] 

®  Bull,  Defcns.  iii.  5.  §  4. 

*  Jortin.  Fccles.  'V*^^-  vol.  ii.  pp.  179,  i8o«  "  ^ 

SECT.  V. 

Tfu  Arian  Here^. 

that  Arius,  in  his  letter  to  Eu^ebius,  scoffs  at  the 
"eternal  birth,"  and  the  "ingcnerate  generation,"  as 
ascribed  to  the  Son  in  the  orthodox  theology;  as  if 
the  inconsistency,  which  the  words  involved,  when 
'aken  in  their  full  sense,  were  a  suflicicnt  refutation  of 
ifie  heavenly  truth,  of  which  they  are,  each  in  its 
place,  the  partial  and  relative  expression. 

The  Catholics  sustained  these  charges  with  a 
prudence,  which  has  (humanly  speaking)  secured 
"^e  success  of  their  cause,  though  it  has  availed  little 
'•^  remove  the  calumnies  heaped  upon  themselves, 
*  tie  great  Dionysius,  who  has  himself  been  defamed 
"i>^  the  "accuser  of  the  brethren,"  declares  perspicu- 
"-^Msly  the  principle  of  the  orthodox  teaching.  "The 
P^^rticular  expressions  which  I  have  used,"  he  says,  in 
•^»s  defence,  "cannot  be  taken  separate  from  each 
'-^ther  ....  whereas  my  opponents  have  taken  two 
t>ald  words  of  mine,  and  sling  them  at  me  from  a 
"iistance  ;  not  understanding,  that,  in  the  case  of 
Subjects,  partially  known,  illustrations  foreign  to  them 
in  nature,  nay,  inconsistent  with  each  other,  aid  the 
inquiry  *." 

However,  the  Catholics  of  course  considered  it  a 

duty  to  remove,  as  far  as  thoy  could,  their  own  verbal 

inconsistencies,  and  to  sanction  one  form  of  expression, 

i  orthodox  in  each   case,  among  the  many  which 

night  be  adopted.     Hence  distinctions   were  made 

^between  the  mtborn  and  unmade,  origin  and  came,  as 

falready  noticed.     But  these,  clear  and  intelligible  as 

they  were  in  themselves,  and  valuable,  both  as  facili- 

fttating  the  argument  and   disabusing   the   perplexed 

r  inquirer,  opened  to  the  heretical  party  the  opportunity 

'  Aihan.  de  Stm,  Dionya.  iS. 

226  The  Avian  Heresy.  [chap.  ii. 

of  a  new  misrepresentation.  Whenever  the  orthodox 
writers  showed  an  anxiety  to  reconcile  and  discrimi- 
nate their  own  expressions,  the  charge  of  Manicheism 
was  urged  against  them  ;  as  if  to  dwell  upon,  were  to 
rest  in  the  material  images  which  were  the  signs  of  the 
unknown  truths.  Thus  the  phrase,  "  Light  of  Light," 
the  orthodox  and  almost  apostolic  emblem  of  the 
derivation  of  the  Son  from  the  Father,  as  symbolizing 
Their  inseparability,  mutual  relation,  and  the  separate 
fulness  and  exact  parallelism  and  unity  of  Their 
perfections,  was  interpreted  by  the  gross  conceptions 
of  the  Manicha^an  Hieracas^. 

3.  When  in  answer  to  such  objections  the  Catholics 
denied  that  they  attached  other  than  a  figurative 
meaning  to  their  words,  their  opponents  suddenly 
turned  round,  and  professed  the  figurative  meaning  of 
the  terms  to  be  that  which  they  themselves  advocated. 
This  inconsistency  in  their  mode  of  conducting  the 
argument  deserves  notice.  It  has  already  been  in- 
stanced in  the  original  argument  of  Arius,  who  main- 
tained, that,  since  the  word  Son  in  its  literal  sense 
included  among  other  ideas  that  of  a  beginning  of 
being,  the  Son  of  God  had  had  a  beginning  or  was 

^  The  €K  ©cou  was  treated  thus  i  ct  yap  Ik  0€oO  ctrrt,  kqX 
l-ykwfidfv  ii  avTOV  6  0€os,  w?  elirelvy  ii  28tas  I'Trocracrccos 
(pvacL  rj  €K  Trjs  totas  ovtrtas,  ovkovv  (JryKiaurjy  7]  rofirjv  cOccaro  rj 
iv  T<3  ycvvav  iwXarvvOrj,  17  cruvearrdkTjf  rj  tl  twv  Kara  to.  TrdOrf  to. 
{TW/xaTLKa  inriarrj*  Epiph.Haer.lxix.  15.  Or,  to  take  the  Objection 
made  at  Nicaea  to  the  ofLOOvaLOV  by  Eusebius  and  some  others  :  iirel 
yap  c<^(rav  ofioovaiov  ctvat,  o  ck  tivos  €OTtv,  rj  Kara  fiepicrfiov,  rj 
Kara  peutrtv,  rj  Kara  'n-pofioXrjv'  Kara  Trpo/SoX-qv  fiev,  <us  €K  pi^tov 
pXdoTrjfia,  Kara  SI  ptva-iv,  a>s  ol  irarpLKoi  7rat8c9,  Kara  /JL€pur/wv 
8c,  0)5  ^dyXou  •xpycCScs  Svo  rj  rptW  kot  ovBkv  Sk  TOVTitsv  &mv 
o  Ytosi  8ta  TOVTO  ov  av^KarariO^arOai  ttj  ttlotcl  V<,€yov,  Socr.  i.  8. 

SECT.  V.J  I  fie  Arian  Heresy.  327 

created,  and  therefore  was  not  really  a  Son  of  God  at 

all.    It  was  on  accountof  such  unscrupulous  dexterity 

in  the  controversy,  that  Alexander  and  Athanasius 

give  them   the  title  of  chameleons.     "  They  arc  as 

Variable  and  uncertain  in  their  opinions,"  (says  the 

latter,} "  as  chameleons  in  tlieir  colour.     When  refuted, 

tey  look   confused,   and   when   examined   they  are 

perplexed ;    however,   at   length   they   recover   their 

assurance,  and  bring  forward  some  evasion.     Then,  if 

^JS  in  turn  is  exposed,  they  do  not  rest  till  they  have 

devised  some  new  absurdity,  and,  as  Scripture  says, 

f^editate  vain  things,  so  that   they  may  secure  the 

P'"ivilege  of  being  profane  V 

let  us,  however,  pursue  the  Arians  on  their  new 
S*"*Dund  of  allegory.  It  has  been  already  observed, 
■lat  they  explain  the  word  Only-begotlen  in  the  sense 
^f"  only-created:  and  considered  the  oneness  of  the 
^ther  and  Son  to  consist  in  an  unity  of  character 
^*~ld  will,  such  as  exists  between  God  and  His  Saints, 
^^3t  in  nature. 

Now,  surely,  the  temper  of  mind,  which  had  re- 
^-^urse  to  such  a  comparison  between  Christ  and  us,  to 
^-*  efend  a  heresy,  was  still  more  odious,  if  possible, 
^lian  the  original  impiety  of  the  heresy  itself.     Thus, 
'^he  honours  graciously  bestowed  upon  human  nature, 
^s  well  as  the  condescending  self-abasement  of  our 
"l,ord,  were  made  to  subsei-ve  the  cause  of  the  blas- 
phemer.    It  is  a  known  peculiarity  of  the  message  of 
mercy,  that  it  views  the  Church  of  Christ  as  if  clothed 
with,  or  hidden  within,  the  glory  of  Him  who  ran- 
somed it;  so  that  there  is  no  name  or  title  belonging 
to  Him  literally,  which  is  not  in  a  secondary  sense 
•  Atliin.  de  Deer-  Nic.  i.  Socr.  i  6.     [Vide  Aih.  Tr.  vd.  i!.  p.  7'-1 
Q   2 

2  28  The  A r tan  Heresy.         [chap.  ii. 

applied  to  the  reconciled  penitent.  As  our  Lord  is 
the  Priest  and  King  of  His  redeemed,  they,  as 
members  of  Him,  are  accounted  kings  and  priests 
also.  They  are  said  to  be  Christs,  or  the  anointed,  to 
partake  of  the  Divine  Nature,  to  be  the  well-beloved  of 
God,  His  sons,  one  with  Him,  and  heirs  of  glory ;  in 
order  to  express  the  fulness  and  the  transcendent 
excellence  of  the  blessings  gained  to  the  Saints  by 
Christ.  In  all  these  forms  of  speech,  no  religious 
mind  runs  the  risk  of  confusing  its  own  privileges 
with  the  real  prerogatives  of  Him  who  gave  them  ; 
yet  it  is  obviously  difficult  in  argument  to  discriminate 
between  the  primary  and  secondary  use  of  the  words, 
and  to  elicit  and  exhibit  the  delicate  reasons  lying  in 
the  context  of  Scripture  for  conclusions,  which  the 
common  sense  of  a  Christian  is  impatient  as  well  as 
shocked  to  hear  disputed.  Who  would  so  trifle  with 
words,  to  take  a  parallel  case,  as  to  argue  that,  because 
Christians  are  said  by  St.  John  to  "  know  all  things," 
that  therefore  God  is  not  omniscient  in  a  sense 
infinitely  above  man's  highest  intelligence } 

It  may  be  observed,  moreover,  that  the  Arians  were 
inconsistent  in  their  application  of  the  allegorical  rule, 
by  which  they  attempted  to  interpret  Scripture ;  and 
showed  as  great  deficiency  in  their  philosophical  con- 
ceptions of  God,  as  in  their  practical  devotion  to  Him. 
They  seem  to  have  fancied  that  some  of  His  acts  were 
more  comprehensible  than  others,  and  might  accord- 
ingly be  made  the  basis  on  which  the  rest  might  be 
interpreted.  They  referred  the  divine  gennesis  or  gen- 
eration to  the  notion  of  creation  ;  but  creation  is  in 
fact  as  mysterious  as  the  divine  gennesis ;  that  is,  we 
are  as  little  able  to  understand  our  own  words,  when 

'  SECT,  v.]  The  Avian  Heresy.  229 

We  speak    of    the   world's    being    brought    out    of 
nothing  at  God's  word,  as  when  we  confess  that  His 
Eternal    Perfections    are    reiterated,    without    being 
•doubled,  in  the  person  of  His  Son.     "  How  is  it,"  asks 
Athanasius,  "  that  the  impious  men   dare  to   speak 
flippantly  on  subjects  too  sacred  to  approach,  mortals 
3s  the/  are,  and  incapable  of  explaining  even  God's  ' 
Works  upon  earth .'     Why  do  I  say,  His  earthly  works  ? 
■f-et  them  treat  of  themselves,  if  so  be  they  can  investi- 
gate their  own  nature ;  yet  venturous  and  self-confi- 
•^ent,  they  tremble  not  before  the  glory  of  God,  which 
■'•-Hgels  are  fain  reverently  to  look  into,  though   iu 
"^ture    and    rank   far   more   excellent   than   thcyS," 
■Accordingly,  he   argues   that  nothing  is   gained   by 
''^solving  one  of  the  divine  operations  into  another  ; 
*^at  to  make,  when  attributed  to  God,  is  essentially 
^istlnct  from  the  same  act  when  ascribed  to  man,  as 
* '•^comprehensible  as  to  give  birth  or  beget  6;   and 
^^^iiscquently  that  it  is  our  highest  wisdom  to  take  the 
^  ruths   of  Scripture  as  we  find  them  there,  and  use 
^"hcm  for  the  purposes  for  which  they  are  vouchsafed, 
~Vrithout  proceeding  accurately  to  systematize  them  or 
■%o  explain  them  away.     Far  from  elucidating,  we  are 
evidently  enfeebling  the  revealed  doctrine,  by  substi- 
tuting ottly-created  for  only-begotten  ;  for  if  the  words 
are  synonymous,  why  should  the  latter  be  insisted  on 
in  Scripture .'     Accordingly,  it  is  proper  to  make  a 
distinction   between    the    primary    and    the    literal 
meaning  of  a   term.      All  the  terms  which   human 
language  applies  to  the  Supreme  Being,  may  perhaps 

*  Athan.  oa  Mau.  li.  :2.  {  6. 

•  Athan.  At  Deer.  Nic-  ii;   vlric  al^o  Gicg,  Naz,  Oiai.  35,  jj,  56(1. 
Eoseb.  Ecd.  Thcol,  i.  11. 

230  The  Arian  Heresy.         [chap.  11. 

be  more  or  less  figurative;  but  their  primary  and 
secondary  meaning  may  still  remain  as  distinct,  as 
when  they  are  referred  to  earthly  objects.  We  need 
not  give  up  the  primary  meaning  of  the  word  Son  as 
opposed  to  the  secondary  sense  of  adoption,  because 
we  forbear  to  use  it  in  its  literal  and  material  sense. 

4.  This  being  the  general  character  of  the  Arian 
reasonings,  it  is  natural  to  inquire  what  was  the  object 
towards  which  they  tended.  Now  it  will  be  found, 
that  this  audacious  and  elaborate  sophistry  could  not 
escape  one  of  two  conclusions  : — the  establishment 
either  of  a  sort  of  ditheism,  or,  as  the  more  practical 
alternative,  of  a  mere  humanitarianism  as  regards  our 
Lord  ;  either  a  heresy  tending  to  paganism,  or  the 
virtual  atheism  of  philosophy.  If  the  professions  of 
the  Arians  are  to  be  believed,  they  confessed  our 
Lord  to  be  God,  God  in  all  respects  7,  full  and  perfect, 
yet  at  the  same  time  to  be  infinitely  distant  from  the 
perfections  of  the  One  Eternal  Cause.  Here  at  once 
they  are  committed  to  a  ditheism  ;  but  Athanasius 
drives  them  on  to  the  extreme  of  polytheism.  "  If," 
he  says,  "  the  Son  were  an  object  of  worship  for 
His  transcendent  glory,  then  every  subordinate  being 
is  bound  to  worship  his  superior^."  But  so  repulsive 
is  the  notion  of  a  secondary  God  both  to  reason,  and 
much  more  to  Christianity,  that  the  real  tendency  of 
Arianism  lay  towards  the  sole  remaining  alternative, 
the  humanitarian  doctrine. — Its  essential  agreement 
with  the  heresy  of  Paulus  has  already  been  incidentally 
shown  ;  it  differed  from  it  only  when  the  pressure  of 
controversy  required  it     Its  history  is  the  proof  of 

•  Cudw.  Intell.  Syst.  4.  $  36.     Petav.  ii.  12.  §  6,. 

y.  231 

lliis.    It  started  with  a  boldness  not  inferior  to  that 
ofPaulus  ;  butas  soon  as  it  was  attacked,  it  suddenly 
coiled  itself  into  a  defensive   posture,   and  plunged 
amid  the  thickets  of  verbal  controversy.     At  first  it 
liadnot  scrupled  to  admit  the  peccable  nature  of  the 
Son ;  but   it   soon   learned  to   disguise   such  conse- 
quences of  its  doctrine,  and  avowed  that,  in  matter  of 
^3ct,  He  was   indefectible.      Next   it   borrowed    the 
'inguage  of  Flatonisra,  which,  without  committing  it 
any  real  renunciation   of  its  former  declarations, 
*^  ciitted  of  the  dress  of  a  high  and  almost  enthusiastic 
Piety.  Then  it  professed  an  entire  agreement  with  the 
Catholics,  except  as  to   the  adoption  of  the  single 
^^'rjrd  consubstantial,  which  they  urged  upon  it;  and 
^-'^ncerning  which,  it  affected  to  entertain  conscientious 
^<^ruples.     At  this  time  it  was  ready  to  confess  that 
*^tir  Lord  was  the  true  God,  God  of  God,  bom  timc- 
^^part,  or  before  all  time,  and  not  a  creature  as  other 
*^rcatures,  but  peculiarly  the  Son  of  God,  and   His 
«^ccurate  Image.     Afterwards,  changing  its  ground,  it 
protested,   as   we    shall    see,   against    non-scriptural 
expressions,  of  which  itself  had  been  the  chief  in- 
A-entor ;  and  proposed  an  union  of  all  opinions,  on 
the  comprehensive  basis  of  a  creed,  in  which  the  Son 
should  be  merely  declared  to  be  "  in  all  tilings  like  the 
Fai/te)'"  or  simply  "like  Him"      This  versatility  of 
profession  is  an  illustration  of  the  character  given  of 
the  Arians  by  Aihanasius,  some  pages  back,  which  is 
further  exemplified  in  their  conduct  at  the  Council  in 
which  they  were  condemned  ;  but  it  is  here  adduced 
to  show  the  danger  to  which  the  Church  was  exposed 

C  party  who  had  no  fixed  tenet,  except  that  of 
ion  to  the  true  notion  of  Cluists  divinity ;  and 

232  The  Arian  Heresy.         [chap,  il 

whose  teaching,  accordingly,  had  no  firm  footing  of 
internal  consistency  to  rest  upon,  till  it  descended  to 
the  notion  of  His  simple  humanity,  that  is,  to  the 
doctrine  of  Artemas  and  Paulus,  though  they  too,  as 
well  as  Arius,  had  enveloped  their  impieties  in  such 
admissions  and  professions,  as  assimilated  it  more  or 
less  in  appearance  to  the  Faith  of  the  Catholic 

The  conduct  of  the  Arians  at  Nicaea,  as  referred  to, 
was  as  follows.  "  When  the  Bishops  in  Council 
assembled,"  says  Athanasius,  an  eye-witness,  "  were 
desirous  of  ridding  the  Church  of  the  impious  expres- 
sions invented  by  Arius,  *  the  Son  is  otit  of  nothing,^ 
*  is  a  creature^  *  once  was  not*  '  of  an  alterable  nature^ 
and  perpetuating  those  which  we  receive  on  the 
authority  of  Scripture,  that  the  Son  is  the  Only- 
begotten  of  God  by  nature,  the  Word,  Power,  the  sole 
Wisdom  of  the  Father,  very  God,  as  the  Apostle 
John  says,  and  as  Paul,  the  Radiance  of  His  glory, 
and  the  express  Image  of  His  Person ;  the  Eusebians, 
influenced  by  their  own  heterodoxy,  said  one  to 
another,  *  Let  us  agree  to  this  ;  for  we  too  are  of  God, 

there  being  one  God,  of  whom  are  all  things.' 

The  Bishops,  however,  discerning  their  cunning,  and 
the  artifice  adopted  by  their  impiety,  in  order  to 
express  more  clearly  the  *  of  Gody  wrote  down  *  of 
God's  substance^  creatures  being  said  to  be  *  of  God,* 
as  not  existing  of  themselves  without  cause,  but 
having  an  origin  of  their  production  ;  but  the  Son  being 
peculiarly  of  the  substance  of  the  Father.  .  .  .  Again, 
on  the  Bishops  asking  the  few  advocates  of  Arianism 
present,  whether  they  allowed  the  Son  to  be,  not  a 
creature,  but  the  sole  Power,  Wisdom,  and  Image, 


The  Arian  Heresy. 


Eternal  and  in  all  respects',  of  the  Fat!icr,  and  vciy 

God,  the  followers  of  Eusebius  were  detected  making 

signs  to  each  other,  to  express  that  this  also  could  be 

applied  to  ourselves.     'For  we  too,'  they  said,  'arc 

called  in  Scripture  the  image  and  glory  of  God  ;  we 

arc  said  to  live  always  .  ,  .  There  are  many  powers  ; 

fie  locust  .'s  called   in   Scripture  "a   great   power." 

f^'ay,  that  we  are  God's  own  sons,  is  proved  expressly 

'"'"om  the  text,  in  which  the  Son  calls  us  brethren. 

^or  does  their  assertion,  that  He  is  very  (true)  God, 

;  He  is  very  God,  because  He  was  made 

^ucV     This  was  the  unprincipled   meaning   of  the 

■'^Hans,     But  here  too  the  Bishops,  seeing  through 

"*eir  deceit,   brought   together  from   Scripture,   the 

'Reliance,  source  and  stream,  express  Image  of  Person, 

■f »  Thy  Light  we  shall  see  light,'  'I  and  the  Father 

**"c  one,'  and  last  of  all,  expressed  themselves  more 

^^■arly  and  concisely,  in  the  phrase  '  consubstantial 

'ith  the  Father;'  for  all  that  was  beforcsaid  has  this 

caning.     As  to  their  complaint  about 


t*lirases,  they  themselves  are  evidence  of  its  futility. 

,r^  ^  was  they  who  began  with  their  impious  expressions ; 

^^r,  after  their  'Out  of  nothing,'  and  'Once  was  not," 

^^oing  beyond  Scripture  in  order  to  be  impious,  now 

^Tiey  make  it  a  grievance,  that,  in  condemning  litem, 

'^Ae  go  beyond  Scripture,  in  order  to  be  pious'."     The 

*  ast  remark  is  important ;  even  those  traditional  statc- 

*ncnts  of  the    Catholic   doctrine,   which   were  more 

explicit  than   Scripture,  had   not  as  yet,  when   the 

controversy  began,  taken  the  shape  of  formula;.     It 

rTfas  the  Arian  defined  propositions  of  the  "out  c/ 

'  Athan.  Ep.  aJ  .\ii' 

...  S.  6. 

334  '^^'■'^  Arian  Heresy.  [chap.  n. 

nothing"  and  the  like,  which  called  for  the  imposition 
of  the  " consitbstantial" 

It  has  sometimes  been  said,  that  the  Catholics 
anxiously  searched  for  some  offensive  test,  which 
might  operate  to  the  exclusion  of  the  Arians.  This  is 
not  correct,  inasmuch  as  they  have  no  need  to  search; 
the  "from  God's  substance "  having  been  openly 
denied  by  the  Arians,  five  years  before  the  Council, 
and  no  practical  distinction  between  it  and  the  consub- 
stantial  existing,  till  the  era  of  Basil  and  his  Semi- 
Arians.  Yet,  had  it  been  necessary,  doubtless  it 
would  have  been  their  duty  to  seek  for  a  test  of  this 
nature ;  nay,  to  urge  upon  the  heretical  teachers  the 
plain  consequences  of  their  doctrine,  and  to  drive 
them  into  the  adoption  of  them.  These  consequences 
are  certain  of  being  elicited  in  the  long-run  ;  and  it  is 
but  equitable  to  anticipate  them  in  the  persons  of  the 
heresiarclis,  rather  than  to  suffer  them  gradually  to 
unfold  and  spread  far  and  wide  after  their  day,  sap- 
ping the  faith  of  their  deluded  and  less  guilty  followers. 
Many  a  man  would  be  deterred  from  outstepping  the 
truth,  could  he  see  the  end  of  his  course  from  the 
beginning.  The  Arians  felt  this,  and  therefore  resisted 
a  detection,  which  would  at  once  expose  them  to  t 
condemnation  of  all  serious  men.  In  this  lies  the 
difference  between  the  treatment  due  to  an  individual 
in  heresy,  and  to  one  who  is  confident  enough  to 
publish  the  innovations  which  he  has  originated.  The 
former  claims  from  us  the  most  affectionate  sympathy, 
and  the  most  considerate  attention.  The  latter  should 
meet  with  no  mercy ;  he  assumes  the  office  of  the 
Tempter,  and,  so  far  forth  as  his  error  goes,  must  be 
dealt  with  by  the  competent  authority,  as  if  he  i 

SECT,  v.]  The  Arian  Heresy.  235 

embodied  Evil.  To  spare  him  is  a  false  and  dangerous 
pity.  It  is  to  endanger  the  souls  of  thousands,  and  it 
is  uncharitable  towards  himself. 





The  authentic  account  of  the  proceedings  of  the 
Nicene  Council  is  not  extant'.  It  has  in  consequence 
been  judged  expedient  to  put  together  in  the  fore- 
going Chapter  whatever  was  necessary  for  the  ex- 
planation of  the  Catholic  and  Arian  creeds,  and  the 
controversy  concerning  them,  rather  than  to  reserve 
any  portion  of  the  doctrinal  discussion  for  the  present, 
though  in  some  respects  the  more  appropriate  place 
for  its  introduction.  Here  then  the  transactions  at 
Nicaea  shall  be  reviewed  in  their  political  or  ecclesias- 
tical aspect 

^  Vide  Ittigius,  Hist.  Cone.  Nic.  (  i.  The  rest  of  this  volume  is 
drawn  up  from  the  following  authorities :  Eusebius,  Vit.  Const.  Socrates, 
Sozomen,  and  Theodoret,  Hist.  Eccles.,  the  various  historical  tracts  of 
Athanasius,  Epiphanius  Hsr.  Ixix.  Ixxiii.,  and  the  Acta  Conciliorum. 
Of  modems,  especially  Tillemont  and  Petavius;  then,  Maimbourg's 
History  of  Arianism,  the  Benedictine  Life  of  Athanasius,  Cave's  Life  of 
Athanasius  and  Literary  History,  Gibbon*s  Roman  History  and  Mr. 
Bridges*  Reign  of  Constantino. 

History  of  tJie  Nicene  Council. 

Arius  first  published  his  heresy  about  the  year  319. 
With  his  turbulent  conduct  in  306  and  a  few  years 
later  we  are  not  here  concerned.     After  this  date,  in 
3' 3,  he  is  said,  on  the  death   of  Achillas,  to  have 
aspired  to  the  primacy  of  the  Egyptian  Church  ;  and, 
according  to  Philostorgius  ^,  the  historian  of  his  party, 
3   "Writer  of  little  credit,  to  have  generously  resigned 
"is   claims  in  favour  of  Alexander,  who  was  elected. 
*!  is  ambitious  character  renders  it  not  improbable  that 
"^    was  a  candidate  for  the  vacant  dignity  ;  but,  if  so, 
"^<^  difference  of  age  between  himself  and  Alexander, 
^liich  must  have  been  considerable,  would  at  once 
*^count  for  the  elevation  of  the  latter,  and  be  an 
'^^'"idence  of  the  indecency  of  Arius  in  becoming  a 
^'^mpctitor  at  all.     His  first  attack  on  the  Catholic 
_^^ctrine  was  conducted  with  an  openness  which,  con- 
,  *tdering  the  general  duplicity  of  his  party,  is  the  most 
^  incurable  trait  in  his  character.     In  a  public  meeting 
^  I"  the  clergy  of  Alexandria,  he  accused  his  diocesan 
^^T  Sabellianism ;    an   insult  which  Alexander,   from 
'"Reference  to  the  talents  and  learning  of  the  objector, 
Sustained  with   somewhat   too   little   of  the  dignity 
•befitting  "the  ruler  of  the   people."      The   mischief 
Xvliich  ensued  from  his  misplaced  meekness  was  con- 
siderable.    Arius  was  one  of  the  public  preachers  of 
Alexandria  ;   and,  as  some  suppose,  Master  of  the 
Catechetical  School.     Others  of  the  city  Presbyters 
"were  stimulated  by  his    example  to  similar  irregu- 
larities.    Colluthus,  Carponas,  and  Sarmatas  began  to 
form  each  his  own  party  in  a  Church  which  Mclctiua 

238       History  of  the  Nicene  Council,  [chap.  hi. 

had  already  troubled  ;  and  Colluthus  went  so  far  as  to 
promulgate  an  heretical  doctrine,  and  to  found  a  sect 
Still  hoping  to  settle  these  disorders  without  the 
exercise  of  his  episcopal  power,  Alexander  summoned 
a  meeting  of  his  clergy,  in  which  Arius  was  allowed 
to  state  his  doctrines  freely,  and  tp  argue  in  their 
defence ;  and,  whether  from  a  desire  not  to  over- 
bear the  discussion,  or  from  distrust  in  his  own  power 
of  accurately  expressing  the  truth,  and  anxiety  about 
the  charge  of  heresy  brought  against  himself,  the 
Primate,  though  in  no  wise  a  man  of  feeble  mind,  is 
said  to  have  refrained  from  committing  himself  on  the 
controverted  subject,  "applauding,"  as  Sozomen  tells 
us,  "  sometimes  the  one  party,  sometimes  the  other^  " 
At  length  the  error  of  Arius  appeared  to  be  of  so 
serious  and  confirmed  a  nature,  that  countenance  of  it 
would  have  been  sinful.  It  began  to  spread  beyond 
the  Alexandrian  Church  ;  the  indecision  of  Alexander 
excited  the  murmurs  of  the  Catholics  ;  till,  called 
unwillingly  to  the  discharge  of  a  severe  duty,  he  gave 
public  evidence  of  his  real  indignation  against  the 
blasphemies  which  he  had  so  long  endured,  by  excom- 
municating Arius  with  his  followers. 

This  proceeding,  obligatory  as  it  was  on  a  Christian 
Bishop,  and  ratified  by  the  concurrence  of  a  provincial 
Council,  and  expedient  even  for  the  immediate  in- 
terests of  Christianity,  had  other  Churches  been 
equally  honest  in  their  allegiance  to  the  true  faith, 
had  the  effect  of  increasing  the  influence  of  Arius,  by 
throwing  him  upon  his  fellow-Lucianists  of  the  rival 
dioceses  of  the  East,  and  giving  notoriety  to  his  name 
and  tenets.   In  Egypt,  indeed,  he  had  already  been  sup- 

*  Soz.  i.  14* 

SBCT,  l]  History  of  the  Nicene  Council.         239 

ported  by  the  Meletian  faction  ;  which,  in  spite  of  its 
profession  of  orthodoxy,  continued  in   alliance   with 
liiin,  through  jealousy  of  the  Church,  even  after  he 
liad  fallen  into  heresy.     But  the  countenance  of  these 
schismatics  was  of  small  consideration,  compared  with 
'he  powerful  aid  fiankly  tendered  him,  on  his  excom- 
•"unication,  by  the  leading  men  in  the  great  Catholic 
t^niniunities  of  Asia  Minor  and  the  East     Csesarea 
"'•IS  tile  first  place  to  afford  him  a  retreat  from  Alex- 
Adrian    orthodoxy,    where    he    received    a    cordial 
•"^eption  from  the  learned  Eusebius,  Metropolitan  of 
"^icstine  ;  while  Athanasius,  Bishop  of  Anazarbus  in 
^*Ucia,  and  others,  did  not  hesitate,  by  letters  on  his 
*^lia!f,  to  declare  their  concurrence  with  him  in  the 
''^ll  extent  of  his  heresy.     Eusebius  even  declared  that 
^Hn'st  was  not  very  or  true  God  ;  and  his  associate 
'Athanasius  asserted,  that  He  was  in  the  number  of 
'^Hc  hundred  sheep  of  the  parable,  that  is,  one  of  the 
^''tatures  of  God. 

Yet,  in  spite  of  the  countenance  of  these  and  other 
Eminent  men,  Arius  found  it  difficult  to  maintain  his 
ground  against  the  general  indignation  which  his 
l\cresy  excited.  He  was  resolutely  opposed  by  Philo- 
gonius,  Patriarch  of  Antioch,  and  Macarius  of  Jerusa- 
lem ;  who  promptly  answered  the  call  made  upon 
them  by  Alexander,  in  his  circulars  addressed  to  the 
Syrian  Churches.  In  the  meanwhile  Eusebius  of 
Kicomedia,  the  early  friend  of  Arius,  and  tlie  eccle- 
siastical advia-r  of  Constantia,  the  Emperor's  sister, 
declared  in  his  favour ;  and  offered  him  a  refuge, 
which  he  readily  accepted,  from  the  growing  unpopu- 

Kty  which  attended  him  in  Palestine.      Supported 

240      History  of  the  Nicene  Council,  [chap.  in. 

now  scarcely  to  be  considered  in  the  position  of  a 
schismatic  or  an  outcast.     He  assumed  in  consequence 
a  more  calm  and  respectful  demeanour  towards  Alex- 
ander ;  imitated  the  courteous  language  of  his  friend  ; 
and   in  his  Epistle,  which  was   introduced  into  the 
foregoing  Chapter,  addresses  his  diocesan   with  stu- 
dious  humility,   and   defers   or  appeals   to   previous 
statements  made  by  Alexander  himself  on  the  doc- 
trine in  dispute'^.     At  this  time  also  he  seems  to  have 
corrected  and  completed  his  system.     George,  after- 
wards Bishop  of  Laodicea,  taught  him  an  evasion  for 
the  orthodox  test  " of  Gody'  by  a  reference  to  i  Cor. 
xi.  12.     Asterius,  a  sophist  of  Cappadocia,  advocated 
the  secondary  sense  of  the  word  Logos  as  applied  to 
Christ,  with  a  reference  to  such  passages  as  Joel  ii.  25 ; 
and,  in  order  to  explain  away  the  force  of  the  word 
*^  Only-begotten,''    (fMovoyevrj^;,)     maintained,    that    to 
Christ  alone  out  of  all  creatures  it  had  been  given, 
to   be  fashioned  under  the  immediate  presence  and 
perilous  weight  of  the  Divine  Hand.     Now  too,  as  it 
appears,  the  title  of  "  True  God  "  was  ascribed  to  Him 
by  the  heretical  party ;  the  **ofan  alterable  nature''  was 
withdrawn  ;  and  an  admission  of  His  actual  indefecti- 
bility  substituted  for  it.     The  heresy  being  thus  placed 
on  a  less  exceptionable  basis,  the  influence  of  Eusebius 
was  exerted  in  Councils  both  in  Bithynia  and  Palestine; 
in  which  Arius  was  acknowledged,  and  more  urgent 
solicitations  addressed  to  Alexander,  with  the  view  of 
effecting  his  re-admission  into  the  Church. 

^  [Alexander's  siding  with  Arius,  was  nothing  more  than  his  disclaim* 
ing  the  views  of  the  Five  Fathers,  vide  supr.  pp.  202,  220 ;  also  Appendix, 
No.  2,  yevnyo'ts.  As  to  the  Arian  evasions  which  follow,  vide  supr.  pp. 
193,  216,  223,238,  &c] 

ai-:r,T.  j."|  History  of  the  Nucnc  CouiinL 

This  was  the  history  of  the  controversy  for  the  first 

four  or  five  years  of  its  existence  ;  that  is,  till  the  era 

of  the  battle  of  Hadrianople  (a.D.  323),  by  the  issue 

of  which  Constantine,  becoming  master  of  the  Romar^ 

world,  was  at  liberty  to  turn  his  thoughts  to  the  state 

of  Christianity  in  the  Eastern  Provinces  of  the  Empire. 

From  this  date  it  is  connected  with  civil  history  ;  a 

result  natural,  and  indeed  necessary  under  the  existing 

circumstances,  though  it  was  the  occasion  of  subject- 

iig"  Christianity  to  fresh  persecutions,  in  place  of  those 

which  its  nominal  triumph  had  terminated.     When  a 

Wesy,    condemned    and    excommunicated    by  one 

f-hurch,  was  taken  up  by  another,  and  independent 

Christian  bodies  thus  stood  in  open  opposition,  nothing 

'*'as  left  to  those  who  desired  peace,  to  say  nothing  of 

Orthodoxy,  but  to  bring  the  question  under  the  notice 

°'  a  General   CounciL     But  as  a  previous  step,  the 

Jeave  of  the  civil  power  was  plainly  necessary  for  so 

public  a  display  of  that  wide-spreading  Association, 

°' Whicti  the  faith  of  the  Gospel  was  the  uniting  and 

^"Tiating  principle.      Thus   the   Church   could   not 

""^et  together  in  one,  without  entering  into  a  sort  of 

"^gotiation  with  the  powers  that  be  ;  whose  jealousy 

is  the  duty  of  Christians,  both  as  individuals  and  as 

t»ody,  if  possible,  to  dispel.     On  the  other  hand,  the 

^*^riian  Emperor,  as  a  professed  disciple  of  the  truth, 

^s  of  course  bound  to  protect  its  interests,  and  to 

**Ord  every  facility  for  its  establishment  in  purity  and 

"^cacy.      It  was  under  these  circumstances  that  the 

*cene  Council  was  convoked. 

Wow  we   must  direct  our  view  for  7>   while  to  the 


242      Histoty  of  the  Nicene  Council,  [chap,  ili 

character  and  history  of  Constantine.     It  is  an  un« 
grateful   task   to   discuss  the   private    opinions 
motives  of  an  Emperor  who  was  the  first  to  proft 
himself  the  Protector  of  the  Church,  and  to  relieve  It 
from  the  abject  and  suffering  condition  in  which  it 
had   lain   for  three   centuries,       Constantine   is   our 
benefactor ;  inasmuch  as  we,  who  now  live,  may 
considered  to  have  received  the  gift  of  Christianity 
means  of  the  increased  influence  which  he  gave  to 
Church.     And,   were  it   not  that   in   conferring 
benefaction  he  burdened   it  with  the  bequest  of 
liercsy,  which  outlived  his  age  by  many  centuries,  an( 
still  exists  in  its  effects  in  the  divisions  of  the  East, 
nothing  would  here  be  said,  from  mere  grateful  re- 
collection of  him,  by  way  of  analyzing  the  state  of 
mind  in  which  he  viewed  the  benefit  which  he  hai 
conveyed  to  us.      But   his   conduct,  as  it  discovi 
itself  in  the  subsequent  history,  natural  as  it  was 
his  case,  still  has  somewhat  of  a  warning  in  it,  whi) 
must  not  be  neglected  in  after  times. 

It  is  of  course  impossible  accurately  to  describe  tl 
various    feelings   with   which   one    in    Const antine's"' 
peculiar  situation  was  likely  to  regard  Christianity 
yet  the  Joint  effect  of  them  all  may  be  gathered  from 
his  actual  conduct,  and  the  state  of  tlie  civilized  worl 
at  the  time,     ^e  found  hi^  rmpirp  distrartf^  yril 
civil  and  religious  dissensions,  which  tended  to  tl 
dissolution  of  society ;  at  a  time  ton,  lyhpn  fhp  bar- 
fa  arians  without  were  pressing  u pen  it  wi th  a  vigour. 
formidable  in  itself,  but  far  more  menacing  in  iionsp- 
quence  of  the  decay  of  the  ancJF'H-  tipfni- 
Ke  perceived  the  powersj)f  its  Pid  polytl'fjj^m,  froi 
whatever  cause.  e.xhaust£d-L^Litd  3  newlv-risen  pliili 



SECT,  r.]    History  of  the  Nicene  Cmmcil.        243 

Sophy  vainly  endeavouring  to  resuscitate  a  mytTinlngy 
ffliich  had  done  its  work,  and  now,  like  all  things  of 
earrh,~was  fast  returning  to  thelTust   from  which  it 
*'as  taken.     He  heard  tlie  same  philosophyjncjilcating 
the" principles  ol  that  more  exalted-*Bd  refined  idi^on, 
™ich  a  civilized  age  will  always   require ;    and   he 
''^tnessed  the  same  substantial  teaching,  as  he  would 
•^f^nsider  it,  embodied  in  the  precepts,  and  enforced  by 
"■e  enei^etic  discipline,  the  union,  and  the  example  of 
"•e  Christian  Church.     Here  his  thoughts  would  rest, 
•"^  in  a  natural  solution  of  the  investigation  to  which 
"^O  state  of  his  empire  gave  rise  ;  and,  without  know- 
'^g  enough  of  the  internal  characters  of  Christianity 
^'^  care  to  instruct  himself  in  them,  he  would  discern, 
"^^   the  face  of  it,  a  doctrine  more  real  than  that  of 
Philosophy,  and  a  rule  of  lifo  more  severe  and  ener- 
S^tic  even  than  that  of  the  old  Republia     The  Gospel 
^^emed  to  be  the  fit  instrument  of  a  civil  reformations, 
*^^ing  but  a  new  form  of  the  old  wisdom,  which  had 
Existed  in  the  world  at  large  from   the   beginning. 
Severing,  nay,  in  one  sense,  honestly  submitting  to  its 
faith,  still  he  acknowledged  it  rather  as  a  school  than 
joined  it  as  a  polity  ;  and  by  refraining  from  the  sacra- 
ment of  baptism  til!  his  last  illness,  he  acted  in  the 
spirit  of  men  of  the  world  in  every  age,  who  dislike  to 
pledge  themselves  to  engagements  which  they  still 
intend  to  fulfil,  and  to  descend  from  the  position  of 
judges  to  that  of  disciples  of  the  truth  ^. 

Concord  is  so  eminently  the  perfection  of  the  Chris- 
tian temper,  conduct,  and  discipline,  and  it  had  been 
so  wonderfully  exemplified  in  the  previous  history  of 

t*  Gibbon,  ix. 
*  Vide  his  speech,  Euscb.  Viu  Const.  \i.  6*. 
R  2 

244    History  of  the  Nicene  CotinciL    [chap.  hi. 

the  Church,  that  it  was  almost  unavoidable  in  a 
heathen  soldier  and  statesman  to  regard  it  as  the  sole 
precept  of  the  Gospel.  It  required  a  far  more  refined 
moral  perception,  to  detect  and  to  approve  the  prin- 
ciple on  which  this  internal  peace  is  grounded  in 
Scripture  ;  to  submit  to  the  dictation  of  truth,  as  such, 
as  a  primary  authority  in  matters  of  political  and 
private  conduct ;  to  understand  how  belief  in  a  certain 
creed  was  a  condition  of  Divine  favour,  how  the  social 
union  was  intended  to  result  from  an  unity  of  opinions, 
the  love  of  man  to  spring  from  the  love  of  God,  and 
zeal  to  be  prior  in  the  succession  of  Christian  graces 
to  benevolence.  It  had  been  predicted  by  Him,  who 
came  to  offer  peace  to  the  world,  that,  in  matter  of 
fact,  that  gift  would  be  changed  into  the  sword  of 
discord  ;  mankind  being  offended  by  the  doctrine, 
more  than  they  were  won  over  by  the  amiableness,  of 
Christianity.  But  He  alone  was  able  thus  to  discern 
through  what  a  succession  of  difficulties  Divine  truth 
advances  to  its  final  victory  ;  shallow  minds  anticipate 
the  end  apart  from  the  course  which  leads  to  it 
Especially  they  who  receive  scarcely  more  of  His 
teaching  than  the  instinct  of  civilization  recognizes 
(and  Constantine  must,  on  the  whole,  be  classed 
among  such),  view  the  religious  dissensions  of  the 
Church  as  simply  evil,  and  (as  they  would  fain  prove) 
contrary  to  His  own  precepts ;  whereas  in  fact  they 
are  but  the  history  of  truth  in  its  first  stage  of  trial, 
when  it  aims  at  being  "pure,"  before  it  is  "peaceable ;" 
and  are  reprehensible  only  so  far  as  baser  passions 
mix  themselves  with  that  true  loyalty  towards  God, 
which  desires  His  glory  in  the  first  place,  and  only  in 
the  second  place,  the  tranquillity  and  good  order  of 

.  1.]  History  of  tlie  Niccm  Couiuil.         245 

Tlie_Edictof  M''a.n  (A".  313)  u'^g  amnng.Uia  -fe^t 
effects  of_Con5t  an  tine's  anxiety  to  restore-iHlowehip 
of  feeling  to  the  membersof  his  distracted  empire. 
InTFan  absolute  toleration  was  given  by  him  and  his 
colleague  LicJnius,  to  the  Cliristians  and  all  other 
persuasions,  to  follow  the  form  of  worship  which  each 
had  adopted  for  himself ;  and  it  was  granted  wi,th  the 
professed  view  of  consulting  for  the  peace  *f  their 

A  year  did  not  elapse  from  the  date  of  this  Edicts 

^^len  Constantine  found  it  necessary  to  support  it  by 

severe  repressive   measures  against  the  Donatists  of 

-''Vfrica,  though  their  offences  were  scarcely  of  a  civil 

•~*  ature.     Their  schism  had  originated  in  the  disap- 

t^^ointed  ambition  of  two  presbyters ;  who  fomented 

^-n  opposition  to  Csecilian,  illegally  elevated,  as  they 

X>retended,  to  the  episcopate  of  Carthage.     Growing 

*  Tto  a  sect,  they  appealed  to  Constantine,  who  referred 

Vheir  cause  to  the  arbitration  of  successive  Councils. 

"These  pronounced  in   favour  of  C^cilian ;   and,  on 

^onstantine's  reviewing  and  confirming  their  sentence, 

the    defeated   party  assailed   him   with   intemperate 

ojmplaints,  accused  Hosins,  his  adviser,  of  partiality 

Pin  the  decision,  stirred  up  the  magistrates  against  the 
fatholic  Cliurch,  and  endeavoured  to  deprive  it  of  its 
places  of  worship.  Constantine  in  consequence  took 
possession  of  their  churches,  banished  their  seditious 
bishops,  and  put  some  of  them  to  death.  A  love  of 
truth  is  not  irreconcilable  either  with  an  unlimited 
toleration,  or  an  exclusive  patronage  of  a  selected 
religion  ;  but  to  endure  or  discountenance  error,  ac- 
cording as  it  is,  or  is  not,  represented  in  an  inde- 
pendent   system    and    existing    authority,   to    spare 

246      History  of  the  Nicefic  Council.  [_chap.  hi. 

the  pagans  and  to  tyrannize  over  the  schismatics,  is 
the  conduct  of  one  who  subjected  religious  principle 
to  expediency,  and  aimed  at  peace,  as  a  supreme 
good,  by  forcible  measures  where  it  was  possible, 
otherwise  by  conciliation. 

It  must  be  observed,  moreover,  that  subsequently  to 
the  celebrated  vision  of  the  Labarum  (A.D.  312),  he 
publicly  invoked  the  Deity  as  one  and  the  same  in  all 
forms  of  worship  ;  and  at  a  later  period  (A.D.  321),  he 
promulgated  simultaneous  edicts  for  the  observance 
of  Sunday,  and  the  due  consultation  of  the  aruspices^. 
On  the  other  hand,  as  in  the  Edict  of  Milan,  so  in 
his  Letters  and  Edicts  connected  with  the  JVrian  con- 
troversy, the  same  reference  is  made  to  external  peace 
and  good  order,  as  the  chief  object  towards  which  his 
thoughts  were  directed.  The  same  desire  of  tran- 
quillity led  him  to  summon  to  the  Nicene  Council 
the  Novatian  Bishop  Acesius,  as  well  as  the  orthodox 
prelates.  At  a  later  period  still  when  he  extended  a 
more  open  countenance  to  the  Church  as  an  institution, 
the  same  principle  discovers  itself  in  his  conduct  as 
actuated  him  in  his  measures  against  the  Donatists. 
In  proportion  as  he  recognizes  the  Catholic  body,  he 
drops  his  toleration  of  the  sectaries.  He  prohibited 
the  conventicles  of  the  Valentinians,  Montanists,  and 
other  heretics  ;  who,  at  his  bidding,  joined  the  Church 
in  such  numbers  (many  of  them,  says  Eusebius, 
"  through  fear  of  the  Imperial  threat,  with  hypocritical 
minds  8"),  that  at  length  both  heresy  and  schism 
might  be  said  to  disappear  from  the  face  of  society. 

7  Gibbon,  Hist.  ibid. 

*  Euseb.  Vit.  Const,  iii.  66.     \yvv  iren-Xi^pwrraL  rj  c' 
yifvtav  alp€TLK(av,     Cyril.  Catech.  xv.  4.] 


Now  let  us  observe  his  conduct  in  the  Arian  con- 

Doubtless  it  was  a  grievous  disappointment  to  a 
generous  and  Jarge-minded  prince,  to  discover  that 
the  Church  itself,  from  which  he  had  looked  for  the 
coiisolidation  of  his  empire,  was  convulsed  by  dis- 
sensions such  as  were  unknown  amid  the  heartless 
^iTanglings  of  Pagan  philosophy.     The  disturbances 
<^used  by  the  Donatists,  which  his  acquisition  of  Italy 
(*-D.  312)  had  opened  upon  his  view,  extended  from 
'he  borders  of  the  Alexandrian  patriarchate  to  the 
''cean.     The  conquest  of  the  East  (A.D.  323)  did  but 
^^liarge  his  prospect  of  the  distractions  of  Christeii- 
*'oin.     The  patriarchate  just  mentioned   had   lately 
l^en  visited  by  a  deplorable  heresy,  which  having  run 
'ts  course  through  the  chief  parts  of  Egypt,  Lybia, 
^nd  Cyrenaica,  had  attacked  Palestine  and  Syria,  and 
spread  thence  into  the  dioceses  of  Asia  Minor  and 
the  Lydian  Proconsulate. 

Constantine  was  informed  of  the  growing  schism  at 
lomedia,  and  at  once  addressed  a  letter  to  Alex- 
ler  and  Arius  jointly^  ;  a  reference  to  which  will 
lable  the  reader  to  verify  for  himself  the  account 
above  given  of  the  nature  of  the  Emperor's  Chris- 
tianity. He  professes  therein  two  motives  as  impel- 
ling him  in  his  public  conduct ;  first,  the  desire  of 
effecting  the  reception,  throughout  his  dominions,  of 
some  one  definite  and  complete  form  of  religious 
worship ;  next,  that  of  settling  and  invigorating  the 
civil  institutions  of  the  empire.  Desirous  of  securing  an 
unity  of  sentiment  among  all  the  believers  in  the  Deity, 
he  first  directed  his  attention  to  the  religious  dissen- 

248      History  of  tJie  Nicene  Council,  [chap.  hi. 

sions  of  Africa,  which  he  had  hoped,  with  the  aid  of 
the  Oriental  Christians,  to  terminate.  "  But,"  he  con- 
tinues, "  glorious  and  Divine  Providence  !  how  fatally 
were  my  ears,  or  rather  my  heart,  wounded,  by  the 
report  of  a  rising  schism  among  you,  far  more  acri- 
monious than  the  African  dissensions. .  . .  On  investi- 
gation, I  find  that  the  reason  for  this  quarrel  is 
insignificant  and  worthless.  ...  As  I  understand  it, 
you,  Alexander,  were  asking  the  separate  opinions  of 
your  clergy  on  some  passage  of  your  law,  or  rather 
were  inquiring  about  some  idle  question,  when  you, 
Arius,  inconsiderately  committed  yourself  to  state- 
ments which  should  either  never  have  come  into  your 
mind,  or  have  been  at  once  repressed.  On  this  a 
difference  ensued.  Christian  intercourse  was  sus- 
pended, the  sacred  flock  was  divided  into  two, 
breaking  the  harmonious  unity  of  the  common  body. 
....  Listen  to  the  advice  of  me,  your  fellow-ser- 
vant : — neither  ask  nor  answer  questions  which  are 
not  upon  any  injunction  of  your  law,  but  from  the 
altercation  of  barren  leisure ;  at  best  keep  them  to 
yourselves,  and  do  not  publish  them.  .  .  .  Your  con- 
tention is  not  about  any  capital  commandment  of 
your  law  ;  neither  of  you  is  introducing  any  novel 
scheme  of  divine  worship ;  you  are  of  one  and  the 
same  way  of  thinking,  so  that  it  is  in  your  power  to 
unite  in  one  communion.  Even  the  philosophers  can 
agree  together,  one  and  all,  in  one  dogma,  though 
differing  in  particulars.  ...  Is  it  righr  for  brothers  to 
oppose  brothers,  for  the  sake  of  trifles  ?  .  .  .  Such 
conduct  might  be  expected  from  the  multitude,  or 
from  the  recklessness  of  boyhood ;  but  is  little  in  . 
keeping  with  your  sacred  profession,  and  with  yoiqlf 

SECT.  I.]   Hislory  of  the  Ni(at£  Cottacil-         349 

personal  wisdom,"     Such   is  the  substance  of   his 
letter,  which,  ^-rittcn  on  an  imperfect  knowledge  of 
the  facts  of  the  case,  and  with  somewhat  of  the  preju- 
dices of  Eclectic  liberalism,  was  inapplicable,  even 
^vhere  abstractedly  true  ;  his  fault  ly-ing  in  his  suppos- 
"ig,  that  an  individual  like  himself,  «ho  had  not  even 
'^ceived  the   grace   of   baptism,   could   discriniinatc 
''etween  great  and  little  questions  in  theology.     He 
Concludes  with  the  following  words,  which  show  the 
^niiablcness  and  sincerity  of  a  mind  in  a  nicaMiiro 
^^'akened  from  the  darkness  of  heathenism,  thmn;h 
•*<;y  betray  the  affectation  of  the  rhetorician  :  "  Give 
'^^e  back  my  days  of  calm,  my  nights  of  security  ; 
*»at  I  may  experience  henceforth  the  comfort  of  the 
'^Icar    light,    and    the    cheerfulness    of   tranqitillily. 
^-^  therwise,  I  shall  sigh  and  be  dissolved  in  tears. .  .  So 
^»-eat  is  my  grief,  that  I  put  off  my  journey  to  tliR 
"■^S^ast  on  the  news  of  your  dissension,  .  . ,  Open  for  me 
'-■liat  path  towards  you,  which  your  contentions  have 
^^losed  up.     Let  me  see  you  and  all  other  citicn  in 
*"*appincss  ;    that  I   may  oflfcr  due  thanlcHgivIngn  to 
^^qA  above,  for  the  unanimity  and  free  intertourof 
^^^tehich  is  seen  among  you." 

^^K'  This  letter  was  conveyed  to  the  Alcx.indfian 
^^^Church  by  Hosius,  who  was  3j>point«<l  1^  \\w 
^^^^mperor  to  mediate  between  the  conttndf«(j  [jartiui, 
A  Council  was  called,  in  uiucli  »on)«  mitva  inefiU' 
laiities  were  zirsnged,  but  nothif^  settled  on  tiut 
main  question  in  disfMitc  Ummw  Mbinwd  to  hi» 
master  to  report  ao  ujmtecmtsliA  niatioH,  *n4  t» 
wh'tse.  as  the  sole  mtMun  n/likh  nnoMJat^  i/t  Iw 
atkiptcd,  the  callii^  of  s  Ge»«nd  CwmuH,  in  wiiuit 
the  (  -^fapr  tM0it  W  IvimiMy  4'Oiiiu»4, 

-ttwr  n*i 

250      History  of  the  Nicene  Council,  [chap.  hi. 

and  a  judgment  promulgated  as  to  the  basis  upon 
which  communion  with  the  Church  was  henceforth 
to  be  determined.  Constantine  assented  ;  and,  dis- 
covering that  the  ecclesiastical  authorities  were 
earnest  in  condemning  the  tenets  of  Arius,  as  being 
an  audacious  innovation  on  the  received  creed,  he 
suddenly  adopted  a  new  line  of  conduct  towards  the 
heresy ;  and  in  a  Letter  which  he  addressed  to  Arius, 
professes  himself  a  zealous  advocate  of  Christian 
truth,  ventures  to  expound  it,  and  attacks  Arius  with 
a  vehemence  which  can  only  be  imputed  to  his  im- 
patience in  finding  that  any  individual  had  presumed 
to  disturb  the  peace  of  the  community.  It  is  remark- 
able, as  showing  his  utter  ignorance  of  doctrines, 
which  were  never  intended  for  discussion  among  the 
unbaptized  heathen,  or  the  secularized  Christian,  that, 
in  spite  of  this  bold  avowal  of  the  orthodox  faith  in 
detail,  yet  shortly  after  he  explained  to  Eusebius  one 
of  the  Nicene  declarations  in  a  sense  which  even 
Arius  would  scarcely  have  allowed,  expressed  as  it  is 
almost  after  the  manner  of  Paulus  i. 

The  first  Ecumenical  Council  met  at  Nicaea  in 
Bithynia,  in  the  summer  of  A.D.  325.  It  was  attended 
by  about  300  Bishops,  chiefly  from  the  eastern  pro- 
vinces of  the  empire,  besides  a  multitude  of  priests, 
deacons,  and  other  functionaries  of  the  Church. 
Hosius,  one  of  the  most  eminent  men  of  an  age  of 
saints,  was  president.  The  Fathers  who  took  the 
principal  share  in  its  proceedings  were  Alexander  of 
Alexandria,  attended  by  his  deacon  Athanasius,  then 

*  Thcod.  Hist.  i.  la. 

'.  I.]  History  of  the  Nicene  Couticil.         251 

about  zf  years  of  age,  and  soon  afterwards  his  successor 

'n  the  see  ;  Eustathius,  patriarch  of  Antioch,  Macarius 

of  Jerusalem,  Csecilian  of  Carthage,  tlie  object  of  the 

hostility  of  the  Donatists,  Leontiiis  of  Cassarea  in 

Cappadocia,  and  Marcellus  of  Ancyra,  whose  name 

"^as  afterwards  unhappily  notorious  in  the  Church. 

^he  number  of  Arian  Bishops  is  variously  stated  at 

'3.  17,  or  22  ;  the  most  conspicuous  of  these  being  the 

'^ell-known  prelates  of  Nicomedia  and  Cresarea,  both 

'^^  whom  bore  the  name  of  Euscbius. 

The  discussions  of  the  Council  commenced  in  the 
fiddle  of  June,  and  were  at  first  private.  Arius  was 
'^^troduccd  and  examined  ;  and  confessed  his  im- 
t»ietics  with  a  plainness  and  vehemence  far  more 
*~»ispectable  than  the  hypocrisy  which  was  the  charac- 
teristic of  his  party,  and  ultimately  was  adopted 
t>y  himself.  Then  followed  his  disputation  with 
■^thanasius  *,   who    afterwards    engaged    the    Arian 

•  ["It  isdif[icull,"sDy  thcNoles,  Alh.  Tr.  vol.  it.  p.  17.  ■' lo  gain  a 
Vlear  idetl  ofllie  ctiaincler  of  Arius.  ALhanasius  speuks  Dti  if  his  Thalia 
"^vas  but  ID  lieeping  iviih  liia  life, calling  him  'tlie  Sotaileui  Arius,'  wlille 
^Jonstantinc,  Alcaandpr,  anil  Epiphanius  give  us  a  coDlrai]'  view  of  liini, 
«lill  (liRering  une  from  the  uthcr.  ConstaotiDC,  iodccd.  is  noi  coiisistenc 
"^th  bitnself ;  first  he  ciies  out  la  him  (as  it  with  Athanaaius),  'Arius, 
JlfiuB,  at  leaat  Id  Ihc  socicly  of  Venus  keep  you  back,'  theii  '  Looli,  look 
all  vaea  . .  how  his  veins  aud  flesh  are  possessed  with  poison,  and  are  in 
a  ferment  of  severe  pain ;  how  his  whale  body  is  wasted,  aud  is  all 

tVTkdiered  and  sad  and  pale  and  shaking,  and  all  that  is  miserable  and 
(Kufull;  emaciated.  How  haleful  lo  see,  and  hovr  fillhy  is  his  mass  of 
hair,  bow  he  is  half  dead  all  over,  with  failing  eyes  and  bloodless  oiunti'- 
naace,  and  woc-begone;  so  thai,  all  these  things  combining  in  him  .11 
otHX.  fttalYt  madness,  and  folly,  from  ihe  continuance  of  the  complaini, 
hare  made  ihec  wild  and  savage.  Bui,  not  having  any  sense  of  the  bad 
pGgbl  he  is  in.  he  cries  out,  "  1  am  Iransponed  with  delight,  and  I  leap 
■nd  skip  for  joy,  and  I  fly  ;  "  and  again,  with  boyish  impcluosily,  "  " 
•o,"  he  saya,  "  we  are  lost."  ' "     Harduin.  Cone.  t.  i.  p.  457.  St  Alexan- 

252      History  of  the  Nicene  Council,  [chap.  III. 

Eusebius  of  Nicomedia,  Maris,  and  Theognis.  The 
unfortunate  Marcellus  also  distinguished  himself  in 
the  defence  of  the  Catholic  doctrine. 

Reference  has  been  already  made  to  Gibbon's 
representation  ^  that  the  Fathers  of  the  Council  were 
in. doubt  for  a  time,  how  to  discriminate  between 
their  own  doctrine  and  the  heresy ;  but  the  discus- 
sions of  the  foregoing  Chapter  contain  sufficient 
evidence,  that  they  had  rather  to  reconcile  themselves 
to  the  adoption  of  a  formula  which  expedience  sug- 
gested, and  to  the  use  of  it  as  a  test,  than  to  discover 
a  means  of  ejecting  or  subduing  their  opponents.  In 
the  very  beginning  of  the  controversy,  Eusebius  of 
Nicomedia  had  declared,  that  he  would  not  admit  the 
'^from  the  substance "  as  an  attribute  of  our  Lord  ^. 
A  letter  containing  a  similar  avowal  was  read  in  the 
Council,  and  made  clear  to  its  members  the  objects 
for  which  they  had  met ;  viz.  to  ascertain  the  char- 
acter and  tendency  of  the  heresy ;  to  raise  a  protest 
and  defence  against  it ;  lastly,  for  that  purpose,  to 

der  speaks  of  Arius's  melancholy  temperament.  Epiphanius*s  account 
of  him  is  as  follows :  "  From  elation  of  mind  this  old  man  swerved  from 
the  truth.  He  was  in  stature  very  tall,  downcast  in  visage,  with  man- 
ners like  a  wily  serpent,  captivating  to  every  guileless  heart  by  that  same 
crafty  bearing.  For,  ever  habited  in  cloke  and  vest,  he  was  pleasant  of 
address,  ever  persuading  souls  and  flattering,"  &c.  Haer.  69,  3.  Arius  is 
here  said  to  be  tall ;  Athanasius,  unless  Julian's  description  of  him  is  but 
declamation,  was  short,  ftiySc  avrfp,  dAA'  dvOpoyirCarKo^  evrckrj^  ("  not 
even  a  man,  but  a  common  little  fellow*').  Ep.  51.  However,  Gregory 
Nazianzen,  who  had  never  seen  him,  speaks  of  him,  as  "high  in  prowess, 
and  humble  in  spirit,  mild,  meek,  full  of  sympathy,  pleasant  in  speech, 
more  pleasant  in  manners,  angelical  in  person,  more  angelical  in  mind, 
serene  in  his  rebukes,  instructive  in  his  praises,*'  &c.    Orat.  21.  8.] 

*  [Supr.  p.  234.] 

*  Theod.  Hist.  i.  6.    [Vide  Ath.  Tr.  vol.  ii.  p.  438.] 

&ECT'.  I."]    History  of  the  Nicene  Council.        253 

^.'  «Dvercome  their  own   reluctance  to    the   formal  and 

■«-in authoritative  adoption  of  a  word,  in  explanation 
<Df  the  true  doctrine,  which  was  not  found  in  Scripture, 
3iad  actually  been  perverted  in  the  previous  century 
■40  an  heretical  meaning,  and  was  in  consequence 
:i'orbidden  by  the  Antiochene  Council  which  con- 
<iemned  Paul  us. 

»The  Arian  party,  on  the  other  hand,  anxious  to 
avoid  a  test,  which  they  themselves  had  suggested, 
presented  a  Creed  of  their  own,  drawn  up  by  Eusebius 
of  CsBsarea.  In  it,  though  the  expression  "of  tlu 
substance"  or  " constibstaniial"  was  emitted,  every 
term  of  honour  and  dignity,  short  of  this,  was  be- 
stowed therein  upon  the  Son  of  God  ;  who  was  des- 
ignated as  the  Logos  of  God,  God  of  God,  Light  of 
Light,  Life  of  Life,  the  Only-begotten  Son,  the  First- 
bom  of  the  whole  creation,  of  the  Father  before  al! 
worlds,  and  the  Instrument  of  creating  them.  The 
Three  Persons  were  confessed  to  be  in  real  hypostasis 

»or  subsistence  (in  opposition  to  Sabellianism),  and  to 
1>e  truly  Father,  Son,  and  Holy  Ghost-  The  Catho- 
lics saw  very  clearly,  that  concessions  of  this  kind  on 
the  part  of  the  Arians  did  not  conceal  the  real  question 
in  dispute.  Orthodox  as  were  the  terms  employed 
by  them,  naturally  and  satisfactorily  as  they  would 
have  answered  the  purposes  of  a  test,  had  the  existing 
questions  never  been  agitated,  and  consistent  as  they 
were  with  certain  producible  statements  of  the  Antc- 
Nicene  writers,  they  were  irrelevant  at  a  time  when 
evasions  had  been  found  for  them  all,  and  triumph- 
antly proclaimed.  The  plain  question  was,  whether 
our  Lord  was  God  in  as  full  a  sense  as  the  Father, 
though  not  to  be  viewed  as  separable  from  Him  ;  or 

254      History  of  tlie  Nicene  Council,  [chap,  iil 

whether,  as  the  sole  alternative,  He  was  a  creature ; 
that  is,  whether  He  was  literally  of,  and  in,  the  one 
Indivisible  Essence  which  we  adore  as  God,  "  consub- 
stantial  with  God,"  or  of  a  substance  which  had  a 
beginning.  The  Arians  said  that  He  was  a  creature, 
the  Catholics  that  He  was  very  God ;  and  all  the 
subtleties  of  the  most  fertile  ingenuity  could  not  alter, 
and  could  but  hide,  this  fundamental  difference.  A 
specimen  of  the  Arian  argumentation  at  the  Council 
has  already  been  given  on  the  testimony  of  Athana- 
sius  ;  happily  it  was  not  successful.  A  form  of  creed 
was  drawn  up  by  Hosius,  containing  the  discrimina- 
ting terms  of  orthodoxy  5 ;  and  anathemas  were  added 
against  all  who  maintained  the  heretical  formulae, 
Arius  and  his  immediate  followers  being  mentioned 
by  name.  In  order  to  prevent  misapprehension  of 
the  sense  in  which  the  test  was  used,  explanations 
accompanied  it.  Thus  carefully  defined,  it  was  offered 
for  subscription  to  the  members  of  the  Council ;  who 
in  consequence  bound  themselves  to  excommunicate 
from  their  respective  bodies  all  who  actually  obtruded 
upon  the  Church  the  unscriptural  and  novel  positions 
of  Arius.  As  to  the  laity,  they  were  not  required  to 
subscribe  any  test  as  the  condition  of  communion ; 
though  they  were  of  course  exposed  to  the  operation 
of  the  anathema,  in  case  they  ventured  on  positive 
innovations  on  the  rule  of  faith. 

While  the  Council  took  this  clear  and  temperate 

•  [Justice  has  not  been  done  here  to  the  ground  of  tradition,  on  which 
the  Fathers  specially  took  their  stand.  For  example,  **  Whoever  heard 
such  doctrine  ?  '*  says  Athanasius  ;  "whence,  from  whom  did  thiy  gain  it? 
Who  thus  expounded  to  them  when  they  were  at  school  ?  **  Orat.  i.  §  8. 
"  Is  it  not  enough  to  distract  a  man,  and  to  nuke  him  stop  his  cars?"' 
\  3$.     Vide  Ath.  Tr.  vol  ii.  pp.  247—253,  311.] 

r.  I.J  History  of  Uie  Niccne  Council.         255 

view  of  its  duties,  Constantine  acted  a  part  altogether 

Consistent  with   his   own   previous    sentiments,   and 

praiseworthy  under  the  circumstances  of  his  defective 

'"lowiedge.     He  had  followed  tlie  proceedings  of  the 

assembled  prelates  with  interest,  and  had  neglected 

"o  opportunity  of  impressing  upon  them  the  supreme 

"nportance  of  securing  the  peace  of  the  Church.     On 

f^e  opening  of  the  Council,  he  had  set  the  example 

'^f  conciliation,  by  burning  publicly,  without  reading, 

*^^«iain  charges  which  had   been   presented   to   him 

"Sainst  some  of  its  members ;  a  noble  act,  as  conveying 

*    lesson  to  all  present  to  repress  every  private  feeling, 

^»^d  to  deliberate  for  the  well-being  of  the  Church 

^-  ^tholic  to  the  end  of  time.     Such  was  his  behaviour, 

J^liile  the  question  in  controversy  was  still  pending; 

^  Vjt  when  the  decision  was  once  announced,  his  tone 

^-Xtered,  and   what  had   been   a   recommendation   of 

^^^"^ution,  at  once  became  an  injunction  to   conform. 

^-^— opposition  to  the  sentence  of  the  Church  was  con- 

^^  i-dered  as  disobedience   to   the   civil  authority  ;  the 

^?fcrospcct  of  banishment  was  proposed  as  the  altcrna- 

"^ive  of  subscription ;  and  it  was  not  long  before  seven 

^^f  the  thirteen  dissentient  Bishops  submitted  to  the 

"pressure  of  the  occasion,  and  accepted  the  creed  with 

its  anathemas  as  articles  of  peace. 

Indeed  the  position  in  which  Eusebius  of  Nico- 
snedia  had  placed  their  cause,  rendered  it  difficult  for 
them  consistently  to  refuse  subscription.  The  violence, 
with  which  Arius  originally  assailed  the  Catholics. 
had  been  succeeded  by  an  affected  earnestness  for 
unity  and  concord,  so  soon  as  his  favour  at  Court 
allowed  him  to  dispense  with  the  low  popularity  by 
which  he  first  rose  into  notice.     The  insignificancy  of 

256      History  of  the  Nicene  Council,  [chap.  hi. 

the  points  in  dispute  which  had  lately  been  the  very 
ground  of  complaint  with  him  and  his  party  against 
the  particular  Church  which  condemned  him,  became 
an   argument   for  .  their    yielding,  when    the    other 
Churches  of  Christendom  confirmed  the  sentence  of 
the  Alexandrian.     It  is  said,  that  some  of  them  sub- 
stituted the  ^'homoeusion  **  ("/ike  in  substance''),  for  the 
*^komousion**  ("one  in  substance'' )  in  the  confessions 
which  they  presented  to  the  Council ;  but  it  is  unsafe 
to  trust  the  Anomoean  Philostorgius,  on  whose  autho- 
rity the  report  rests  ^,  in  a  charge  against  the  Eusebian 
party,  and  perhaps  after  all  he  merely  means,  that 
they  explained  the  latter  by  the  former  as  an  excuse 
for  their  own  recantation.     The  six,  who   remained 
unpersuaded,   had  founded   an  objection,  which  the 
explanations  set  forth  by  the  Council  had  gone  to 
obviate,  on  the  alleged  materialism  of  the  word  which 
had  been  selected  as  the  test.     At  length  four  of  them 
gave  way  ;  and  the  other  two,  Eusebius  of  Nicomedia 
and    another,   withdrawing   their    opposition   to   the 
"komoiision,"  only  refused  to  sign  the  condemnation 
of  Arius.      These,  however,  were  at  length  released 
from  their  difficulty,  by  the  submission  of  the  here- 
siarch  himself;  who  was  pardoned  on  the  understand- 
ing, that  he  never  returned  to  the  Church,  which  had 
suffered  so  much  from  his  intrigues.     There  is,  how- 
ever,   some    difficulty   in   this   part   of   the  history. 
Eusebius   shortly   afterwards  suffered    a    temporary 
exile,   on   a  detection  of  his  former  practices  with 
Licinius  to  the  injury  of  Constantine;    and   Arius, 
apparently  involved  in  his  ruin,  was  banished  with 
his  followers  into  Illyria. 

*  Philosu  i.  9* 


^Om  the  time  that  the  Eusebians  consented  to  sub- 
^-^ibe  the  Homoiision  in  accordance  with  the  wishes 
***  a  heathen  prince,  they  became  nothing  better  tlian 
"■  political  party.  They  soon  learned,  indeed,  to  call 
*«cmselvcs  Homoeiisians,  or  believers  in  the  "like" 
Substance  (Iwmmision,)  as  if  they  still  held  the  peculi- 
arities of  a  religious  creed  ;  but  in  truth  it  is  an  abuse 
«f  language  to  say  that  they  had  any  definite  belief  at 

»alL  For  this  reason,  the  account  of  the  Homceusian 
or  Semi-Arian  doctrine  shall  be  postponed,  till  such 
time  as  we  fall  in  with  individuals  whom  we  may 
believe  to  be  serious  in  their  professions,  and  to  act 
under  the  influence  of  religious  convictions  however 
erroneous.  Here  the  Eusebians  must  be  described  as 
a  secular  faction,  which  is  the  true  character  of  them 
I  in  the  history  in  which  they  bear  a  part. 

Strictly  speaking,  the  Christian  Church,  as  being  a 

I  visible   society,  is  necessarily   a  political   power    or 

I  party.      It  may  be  a  party  triumphant,  or  a  party 

\  under  persecution  ;    but  a   party  it  always  must  be, 

prior  in  existence  to  the  civil  institutions  with  which 

surrounded,   aud  from  its  latent  divinity  fonni- 

258  Consequences  of  the  Nicene  Council,  [chap.iii. 

dable  and  influential,  even  to  the  end  of  time.  The 
grant  of  permanency  was  made  in  the  beginning,  not 
to  the  mere  doctrine  of  the  Gospel,  but  to  the  Associ- 
ation itself  built  upon  the  doctrine '  ;  in  prediction, 
not  only  of  the  indestructibility  of  Christianity,  but  of 
the  medium  also  through  which  it  was  to  be  mani- 
fested to  the  world.  Thus  the  Ecclesiastical  Body  is 
a  divinely-appointed  means,  towards  realizing  the 
great  evangelical  blessings.  Christians  depart  from 
their  duty,  or  become  in  an  offensive  sense  political, 
not  when  they  act  as  members  of  one  community,  but 
when  they  do  so  for  temporal  ends  or  in  an  illegal 
manner  ;  not  when  they  assume  the  attitude  of  a 
party,  but  when  they  split  into  many.  If  the  primitive 
believers  did  not  interfere  with  the  acts  of  the  civil 
government,  it  was  merely  because  they  had  no  civil 
rights  enabling  them  legally  to  do  so.  But  where 
they  have  rights,  the  case  is  different  2 ;  and  the 
existence  of  a  secular  spirit  is  to  be  ascertained,  not 
by  their  using  these,  but  their  using  them  for  ends 
short  of  the  ends  for  which  they  were  given.  Doubt- 
less in  criticizing  the  mode  of  their  exercising  them  in 
a  particular  case,  differences  of  opinion  may  fairly 
exist ;  but  the  principle  itself,  the  duty  of  using  their 
civil  rights  in  the  service  of  religion,  is  clear ;  and 
since  there  is  a  popular  misconception,  that  Christians, 
and  especially  the  Clergy,  as  such,  have  no  concern  in 
temporal  affairs,  it  is  expedient  to  take  every  oppor- 
tunity of  formally  denying  the  position,  and  demanding 
proof  of  it.  In  truth,  the  Church  was  framed  for  the 
express  purpose  of  interfering,  or  (as  irreligious  men 
will  say)  meddling  with  the  world.     It  is  the  plain 

*  Matt.  xvi.  iS,  3  Acts  xvi.  37 — ^39. 

~^tih.  u^C6n.ssjttenc£s  of  Ike  Nicene  CoHHtil.  259 

^uty  of  its  members,  not  only  to  associate  internally, 
%ut  also  to  devctopc  that  internal  union  in  an  external 
^larfarc  with  the  spirit  of  evil,  whether  in  Kings' 
<ourts  or  among  the  mixed  multitude ;  and,  if  they 
can  do  nothing  else,  at  least  they  can  suffer  for  the 
truth,  and  remind  men  of  "t,  by  inflicting  on  them  the 
task  of  persecution. 

These  principles  being  assumed,  it  is  eas)-  to  enter 
into  the  relative  positions  of  the  Catholics  and  Arians 
at  the  era  under  consideration.  As  to  tlie  Arians,  it 
is  a  matter  of  fact,  that  Arius  and  his  friends  com- 
menced their  career  with  the  deliberate  commission  of 
disorderly  and  schismatical  acts  ;  and  it  is  a  clear 
inference  from  their  subsequent  proceedings,  that  they 
did  so  for  private  ends.  For  both  reasons,  then,  they 
were  a  mere  political  faction,  usurping  tlie  name  of 
religion  ;  and,  as  such,  essentially  anti-christian.  The 
question  here  is  not  whether  their  doctrine  was  right 
ir  wrong ;  but,  whether  they  did  not  make  it  a 
'Secondary  object  of  their  exertions,  an  instrument 
towards  attaining  ends  which  they  valued  above  it. 
Now  it  will  be  found,  that  the  party  was  prior  to  the 
creed.  They  grafted  their  heresy  on  the  schism  of 
le  Meletians,  who  continued  to  support  them  after 
ley  had  published  it ;  and  they  readily  abandoned  it, 
len  their  secular  interests  required  the  sacrifice.  At 
the  Council  of  Nica;a,  they  began  by  maintaining  an 
erroneous  doctrine  ;  they  ended  by  concessions  which 
implied  the  further  heresy  that  points  of  faith  are  of 
no  importance;  and,  if  they  were  odious  when  they 
blasphemed  the   truth,  they  were  still   more  odious 

26o  Consequences  oftheNicene  Council,  [chap.iii. 

when  they  confessed  it.  It  was  the  very  principle  of 
Eclecticism  to  make  light  of  differences  in  belief; 
while  it  was  involved  in  the  primary  notion  of  a 
Revelation  that  these  differences  were  of  importance, 
and  it  was  taught  with  plainness  in  the  Gospel,  that 
to  join  with  those  who  denied  the  right  faith  was  a 

This  adoption,  however,  on  the  part  of  the  Euse- 
bians,  of  the  dreams  of  Pagan  philosophy,  served  in 
some  sort  as  a  recommendation  of  them  to  a  prince 
who,  both  from  education  and  from  knowledge  of  the 
world,  was  especially  tempted  to  consider  all  truth  as 
a  theory  which  was  not  realized  in  a  present  tangible 
form.  Accordingly,  when  once  they  had  rid  them- 
selves of  the  mortification  caused  by  their  forced 
subscription,  they  had  the  satisfaction  of  finding 
themselves  the  most  powerful  party  in  the  Church, 
as  being  the  representative  and  organ  of  the  Em- 
peror's sentiments.  They  then  at  once  changed  places 
with  the  Catholics  ;  who  sustained  a  double  defeat, 
both  in  the  continued  power  of  those  whom  they  had 
hoped  to  exclude  from  the  Church,  and  again,  in  the 
invidiousness  of  their  own  unrelenting  suspicion  and 
dislike  of  men,  who  had  seemed  by  subscription  to 
satisfy  all  reasonable  doubt  respecting  their  ortho- 

The  Arian  party  was  fortunate,  moreover,  in  its 
leaders  ;  one  the  most  dexterous  politician,  the  other 
the  most  accomplished  theologian  of  the  age.  Euse- 
bius  of  Nicomedia  was  a  Lucianist,  the  fellow-disciple 
of  Arius.  He  was  originally  Bishop  of  Berytus,  in 
Phoenicia ;  but,  having  gained  the  confidence  of  Con- 
«tantia,  sister  to  Constantine,  and  wife  to  Licinius,  he 

SKT;  n?[  Consequences  of  the  Nicene  Council.  261 

was  by  her  influence  translated  to  Nicomedia,  where 
the   Eastern  Court  then  resided.      Here  he  secretly 
engaged   in  the  cause  of  Licinius  against  iiis  rival, 
and    is  even  reported  to  have  been  indifferent  to  the 
st-curityof  the  Christians  during  the  persecution  which 
followed  ;  a  charge  which  certainly  derives  some  con- 
^nrjation  from  Alexander's  circular  epistle,  in  which 
the  Arians  are  accused  of  directing  the  violence  of  the 
civil  power  against  the  orthodox  of  Alexandria.     On 
the    ruin  of  Licinius,  he  was  screened  by  Constantia 
•''oin  the  resentment  of  the  conqueror ;    and,  being 
"^c^^^tm mended  by  his  polished   manners  and  shrewd 
^n<i   persuasive  talent,  he  soon  contrived  to  gain  an 
'^flvience  over  the  mind  of  Constantinc  himself.   From 
***^   time  that  Arius  had  recourse  to  him  on  his  flight 
''*^>m  Palestine,  he  is  to  be  accounted  the  real  head  of 
^^  heretical   party ;    and   his   influence    is   quickly 
*S«ernible  in  the  change  which  ensued  in  its  language 
^""^^  conduct     While  a  courteous  tone  was  assumed 
"~-*"Vvard3  the  defenders  of  the  orthodox  doctrine,  tlie 
*^V)tleties  of  dialectics,  in  which  the   sect    excelled, 
^''^re  used,  not  in  attacking,  but  in  deceiving  its  oppo- 
^^ots.  in  making  unbelief  plausible,  and  obliterating 
^*Xe  distinctive  marks  of  the  true  creed.     It  must  not 
•^^  forgotten  that  it  was  from  Nicomedia,  the  see  of 
1  -^Xusebius,  that  Constantine  wrote  his  epistle  to  Alex- 
fender  and  Arius. 

In  supporting  Arianism  in  its  new  direction,  the 

\  Either  Eusebius,  Bishop  of  Ca^sarea,  was  of  singular 

"  Siervice,     This  distinguished  writer,  to  whom  the  Chris- 

I  \ian  world  has  so  great  a  debt  at  the  present  day, 

though  not  characterized  by  the  unprincipled  ambition 

of  bis  namesake,  is  unhappily  connected  in  history 

262  Consequences  of  ike  Nicene  CoundL  [chap.  hi. 

with  the  Arian  party.  He  seems  to  have  had  the 
faults  and  the  virtues  of  the  mere  man  of  letters : 
strongly  excited  neither  to  good  nor  to  evil,  and 
careless  at  once  of  the  cause  of  truth  and  the  prizes  of 
secular  greatness,  in  comparison  of  the  comforts  and 
decencies  of  literary  ease.  His  first  master  was 
Dorotheus  of  Antioch  3  ;  afterwards  he  became  a 
pupil  of  the  School  of  Caesarea,  which  seems  to  have 
been  his  birth-place,  and  where  Origen  had  taught. 
Here  he  studied  the  works  of  that  great  master,  and 
the  other  writers  of  the  Alexandrian  school.  It  does 
not  appear  when  he  first  began  to  arianize.  At 
Caesarea  he  is  celebrated  as  the  friend  of  the  Orthodox 
Pamphilus,  afterwards  martyred,  whom  he  assisted  in 
his  defence  of  Origen,  in  answer  to  the  charges  of 
heterodoxy  then  in  circulation  against  him.  The  first 
book  of  this  work  is  still  extant  in  the  Latin  trans- 
lation of  Ruffinus,  and  its  statements  of  the  Catholic 
doctrines  are  altogether  explicit  and  accurate.  In 
his  own  writings,  numerous  as  they  are,  there  is  very 
little  which  fixes  on  Eusebius  any  charge,  beyond  that 
of  an  attachment  to  the  Platonic  phraseology.  Had 
he  not  connected  himself  with  the  Arian  party,  it 
would  have  been  unjust  to  have  suspected  him  of 
heresy.  But  his  acts  are  his  confession.  He  openly 
sided  with  those  whose  blasphemies  a  true  Christian 
would  have  abhorred  ;  and  he  sanctioned  and  shared 
their  deeds  of  violence  and  injustice  perpetrated  on  the 

But  it  is  a  different  reason  which  has  led  to  the 
mention  of  Eusebius  in  this  connection.  The  grave 
accusation  under  which  he  lies,  is  not  that  of  arian- 

*  Danz.  de  Eus.  Caesar.  22. 

SEcT,ii.J  Consequsnas  of  the  Nicaii:  CoumU.  263 

'^'"g.  but  of  corrupting  the  simplicity  of  the  Gospel 
with    an    Eclectic  spirit.      While  he   held   out    the 
ambiguous  language  of  the  schools  as  a  refuge,  and 
tile    Alexandrian    imitation   of   it   as   an   argument, 
ainst  the  pursuit  of  the  orthodox,  his  conduct  gave 
Countenance  to  the  secular  maxim,  that  difference  in 
•creeds  is  a  matter  of  inferior  moment,  and  that,  pro- 
vided we  confess  as  far  as  the  very  terms  of  Scripture, 
^'*^     may  speculate   as  philosophers,  and  live  as  the 
rid*     A  more  dangerous  adviser  Constantine  could 
"ardly  have  selected,  than  a  man  thus  variously  gifted, 
thus  exalted  in  the  Churdi,  thus  disposed  towards  the 
"^^r-y  errors  against  which  he  required  especially  to  be 
^"a-i-ded.     The  remark  has  been  made  that,  through- 
*-*ut    his  Ecclesiastical  History  no  instance  occurs  of 
'^      expressing   abhorrence   of   the    superstitions    of 
,   ^^^anism,  and  that  his  custom  is  eitlier  to  praise,  or 
^fc^'^t  to  blame,  such  heretical  writers  as  fall  under  his 

^tT  ^^or  must  the  influence  of  the  Court  pass  unnoticed, 
^*  recounting  the  means  by  which  Arianism  secured  a 
^~^ld  over  the  mind  of  the  Emperor.  Constantia,  his 
^^^^*-'\^ourite  sister,  was  the  original  patroness  of  Eusebius 
^K^*"  Nicomedia ;  and  thus  a  princess,  whose  name 
^^P^^uld  otherwise  be  dignified  by  her  misfortunes,  is 

'*  In  this  association  of  the  Euscbian  with  Ihe  Eclectic  tempci,  it  niusi 
r*i>1  be  largollai,  that  Julian  iht  Apostate  was  the  pupil  of  Eusebius  of 
^^icomrdia,  his  kinsmaji;  that  he  took  part  with  Ibe  Arians  against  the 
Catholics  :  and  that,  in  one  of  his  exam  epistles,  he  speaks  in  piaJse  of 
^*»e  writings  of  an  Aiian  Bishop,  Groige  of  Laodicea.      Vidt-  Weisman, 

•«se.iY.3S  *''■ 

*  Kesiner  dc  Euseh.  Auctor.  prolcgom.  {  I  J.  Yet  it  must  be  e.5ifts3«l. 
he  is  strongly  opposed  to  ■yojjrtio  iti  all  its  foima  i  i.  e  i«  being  un- 
xvottlij'  a  philnsopher. 

264  Consequmces  of  the  Nicene  CounciL  [chap.iil 

known  to  Christians  of  later  times  only  as  a  principal 
instrument  of  the  success  of  heresy.  Wrought  upon 
by  a  presbyter,  a  creature  of  the  bishop's,  who  was  in 
her  confidence,  she  summoned  Constantine  to  her 
bed-side  in  her  last  illness,  begged  him,  as  her  parting 
request,  to  extend  his  favour  to  the  Arians,  and 
especially  commended  to  his  regard  the  presbyter 
himself,  who  had  stimulated  her  to  this  experiment  on 
the  feelings  of  a  brother.  The  hangers-on  of  the 
Imperial  Court  imitated  her  in  her  preference  for  the 
polite  and  smooth  demeanour  of  the  Eusebian  pre- 
lates, which  was  advantageously  contrasted  to  the 
stern  simplicity  of  the  Catholics.  The  eunuchs  and 
slaves  of  the  palace  (strange  to  say)  embraced  the 
tenets  of  Arianism ;  and  all  the  most  light-minded 
and  frivolous  of  mankind  allowed  themselves  to 
pervert  the  solemn  subject  in  controversy  into  matter 
for  fashionable  conversation  or  literary  amusement. 

The  arts  of  flattery  completed  the  triumph  of  the 
heretical  party.  So  many  are  the  temptations  to 
which  monarchs  are  exposed  of  forgetting  that  they 
are  men,  that  it  is  obviously  the  duty  of  the  Episcopal 
Order  to  remind  them  that  there  is  a  visible  Power  in 
the  world,  divinely  founded  and  protected,  superior  to 
their  own.  But  Eusebius  places  himself  at  the  feet 
of  a  heathen ;  and  forgetful  of  his  own  ordination- 
grace,  allows  the  Emperor  to  style  himself  "  the  bishop 
of  Paganism,"  and  "  the  predestined  Apostle  of  virtue 
to  all  men  6."  The  shrine  of  the  Church  was  thrown 
open  to  his  inspection  ;  and,  contrary  to  the  spirit  of 
Christianity,  its  mysteries  were  officiously  explained 
to  one  who  was  not  yet  even  a  candidate  for  baptism. 

•  Euseb.  Vit.  Const,  iii.  58.  iv.  24.     Vide  also,  i.  4.  24. 

^^-CT  II.]  Consequences  of  ike  Nieene  Cmtneil.  265 

file  restoration  and  erection  of  Churches,  which  is  the 
honourable  distinction  of  his  reign,  assimilated  him, 
in  the  minds  of  his  courtiers,  to  the  Divine  Founder 
and  r*riest  of  the  invisible  temple  ;  and  the  magni- 
ficence, which  soothed  the  vanity  of  a  monarch,  seemed 
'n  its  charitable  uses  almost  a  substitute  for  personal 

^Vljile  events  thus  gradually  worked  for  the  secular 

^"^^ncement   of  the  heretical   party,   the   Catholics 

*er^   allotted  gratifications  and  anxieties  of  a  higher 

cliaracter.     The  proceedings  of  the  Council  had  de- 

tect^d  the  paucity  of  the  Arians  among  the  Rulers  of 

'"J    Church  ;    which  had  been  the  more  clearly  ascer- 

'^"^^d,  inasmuch  as  no  temporal  interests  had  operated 

*"  &ain  for  the  orthodox  cause  that  vast  preponderance 

^'   Advocates  which  it  had  actually  obtained.     More- 

°^'^*",  it  had  confirmed  by  the  combined  evidence  of 

^^      universal  Church,  the  ailment  from  Scripture 

"*3.    local  tradition,    which  each  separate    Christian 

°*"*nmunity   already   possessed.      And    there   was   a 

^^  i  sfaction  in  having  found  a  formula  adequate  to  the 

r""^^  servation  of  the  all-important  article  in  controversy 

^U  its  purity.     On  the  other  hand,  in  spite  of  these 

r^  Xnediate  causes  of  congratulation,  the  fortunes  of 

^^^  Church  were  clouded  in  prospect,  by  the   Em- 

P^^^or's  adoption  of  its  Creed  as  a  formula  of  peace, 

"^^^^t  of  belief,  and  by  the  ready  subscription  of  the 

.  ^^  principled  faction,  which  had  previously  objected  to 

'*^~       This  immediate  faiUire,  which  not   imfrequently 

-    *-^tends  beneficial  measures  in  their  commencement. 

266  Conseqtiences  of  the  Nicene  CounciL\cKAV.  iii. 

issued,  as  has  been  said,  in  the  temporary  triumph  of 
the  Arians.  The  disease,  which  had  called  for  the 
Council,  instead  of  being  expelled  from  the  system, 
was  thrown  back  upon  the  Church,  and  for  a  time 
afflicted  it  ^  ;  nor  was  it  cast  out,  except  by  the 
persevering  fasting  and  prayer,  the  labours  and  suf- 
ferings, of  the  oppressed  believers.  Meanwhile,  the 
Catholic  prelates  could  but  retire  from  the  Court 
party,  and  carefully  watch  its  movements  ;  and,  in 
consequence,  incurred  the  reproach  and  the  penalty 
of  being  "  troublers  of  Israel."  This  may  be  illustrated 
from  the  subsequent  history  of  Arius  himself,  with 
which  this  Chapter  shall  close. 

It  is  doubtful,  whether  or  not  Arius  was  persuaded 
to  sign  the  symbol  at  the  Nicene  Council ;  but  at 
least  he  professed  to  receive  it  about  five  years  after- 
wards. At  this  time  Eusebius  of  Nicomedia  had 
been  restored  to  the  favour  of  Constantine ;  who,  on 
the  other  hand,  influenced  by  his  sister,  had  become 
less  zealous  in  his  adherence  to  the  orthodox  side  of 
the  controversy.  An  attempt  was  made  by  the 
friends  of  Arius  to  effect  his  re-admission  into  the 
Church  at  Alexandria.  The  great  Athanasius  was  at 
this  time  Primate  of  Egypt ;  and  in  his  instance  the 
question  was  tried,  whether  or  not  the  Church  would 
adopt  the  secular  principles,  to  which  the  Arians  were 
willing  to  subject  it,  and  would  abandon  its  faith,  as 
the  condition  of  present  peace  and  prosperity.  He 
was  already  known  as  the  counsellor  of  Alexander  in 
the  previous  controversy ;  yet,  Eusebius  did  not  at 
once  give  up  the  hope  of  gaining  him  over,  a  hope 
which  was  strengthened  by  his  recent  triumph  over 

•  Theod,  Hist.  i.  6,  fiiu 

•nences  of  ike  Nicene  Council.  267 

the  orthodox  prelates  of  Antioch,  Gaza,  and  Hadrian- 
Ople,whom  he  had  found  means  to  deprive  of  their 
sees  to  make  way  for  Ariaiis.  Failing  in  his  attempt 
at  conciliation,  he  pursued  the  policy  which  might 
have  been  anticipated,  and  accused  the  Bishop  of 
Alexandria  of  a  youthful  rashness,  and  an  obstinate 
contentious  spirit,  incompatible  with  the  good  under- 
standing which  ought  to  subsist  among  Christians, 
Ariiis  was  summoned  to  Court,  presented  an  ambig- 
uous confession,  and  was  favourably  received  by 
I  Cons  tan  tine.     Thence  he  was  despatched  to  Alex- 

andria, and   was    quickly   followed   by   an   imperial 
injunction  addressed  to  Athanasius,  in  order  to  secure 
the  restoration  of  the  heresiarch  to  the  Church  to 
^"ich  he  had  belonged.     "  On  being  informed  of  my 
P'^asurc,"  saj's  Constantine,  in  the  fragment  of  the 
'Epistle  preserved  by  Athanasius,  "give  free  admission 
'"  3-11,  who  arc  desirous  of  entering  into  communion 
'''"H  the  Church.     For  if  I  learn  of  your  standing  in 
"'^     "way  of  any  who  were  seeking  it,  or  interdicting 
fnern,  I  will  send  at  once  those  who  shall  depose  you 
'nsin^gj^  by  my  authority,  and  banish  you  from  your 
see  ^"     ]j  ^gg  ^yj-  (q  |jg  supposed,  that  Athanasius 
'<*v»ld  yield  to  an  order,  though  from  his  sovereign, 
^^icrli  was  conceived  in  such  ignorance  of  the  principles 
°         Churcli  communion,   and   of   the   powers   of  its 
*^*-*Xers;  and,  on  his  explanation,  the  Emperor  pro- 
*^^ed  himself  wel!  satisfied,  that  he  should  use  his 
^^  ti  discretion  in  the  matter.     The  intrigues  of  the 
~^^-* sebians,  which  followed,  shall  elsewhere  be  related; 
tiv^iy  ended  in  effecting  the  banishment  of  Athanasius 

tl,  the  restoration  of  Arius  at  a  Council  held 
•  Alhan.  Apol.c>,nlr.  Arinii  59. 

268  Consequences  of  the  Nicene  Council.  Fchap.  hi. 

at  Jerusalem,  his  return  to  Alexandria,  and,  when  the 
anger  of  the  intractable  populace  against  him  broke 
out  into  a  tumult,  his  recall  to  Constantinople  to  ^\w^ 
further  explanations  respecting  his  real  opinions. 

There  the  last  and  memorable  scene  of  his  history 
took  place,  and  furnishes  a  fresh  illustration  of  the 
clearness  and  integrity,  with  which  the  Catholics 
maintained  the  true  principles  of  Church  union, 
against  those  who  would  have  sacrificed  truth  to 
peace.  The  aged  Alexander,  bishop  of  the  see, 
underwent  a  persecution  of  entreaties  and  threats, 
such  as  had  already  been  employed  against  Athana- 
sius.  The  Eusebians  ui^ed  upon  him,  by  way  of 
warning,  their  fresh  successes  over  the  Bishops  of 
Ancyra  and  Alexandria  ;  and  appointed  a  day,  by 
which  he  was  to  admit  Arius  to  communion,  or  to  be 
ejected  from  his  see.  Constantine  confirmed  this 
alternative.  At  first,  indeed,  he  had  been  struck  with 
doubts  respecting  the  sincerity  of  Arius ;  but,  on  the 
latter  professing  with  an  oath  that  his  tenets  were 
orthodox,  and  presenting  a  confession,  in  which  the 
terms  of  Scripture  were  made  the  vehicle  of  his  char- 
acteristic impieties,  the  Emperor  dismissed  his  scruples, 
observing  with  an  anxiety  and  seriousness  which  rise 
above  his  ordinary  character,  that  Arius  had  well 
sworn  if  his  words  had  no  double  meaning ;  otherwise, 
God  would  avenge.  The  miserable  man  did  not 
hesitate  to  swear,  that  he  professed  the  Creed  of  the 
Catholic  Church  without  reservation,  and  that  he  had 
never  said  nor  thought  otherwise,  than  according  to  the 
statements  which  he  now  made. 

For  seven  days  previous  to  that  appointed  for  his 
re-admission,  the  Church   of  Constantinople,  Bishop 

SECT.  II.]  Conseguenees  of  the  Nicene  Council.  269 

and  people,  were  given  up  to  fasting  and  prayer. 
Alexander,  after  a  vain  endeavour  to  move  the 
Emperor,  had  recourse  to  the  most  solemn  and 
extraordinary  form  of  anathema  allowed  in  the 
Church' ;  and  with  tears  besought  its  Divine  Guardian, 
either  to  take  himself  out  of  the  world,  or  to  remove 
thence  the  instrument  of  those  extended  and  increasing 
spiritual  evils,  with  which  Christendom  was  darken- 
■"&■  On  the  evening  before  the  day  of  his  proposed 
triumph,  Arius  passed  through  the  streets  of  the  city 
with  his  party,  in  an  ostentatious  manner  ;  when  the 
strol^e  of  death  suddenly  overtook  him,  and  he  expired 
before  his  danger  was  discovered. 

tJtider  the  circumstances,  a  thoughtful  mind  cannot 
tiut  account  this  as  one  of  those  remarkable  interpo- 
*""^iis  of  power,  by  which  Divine  Providence  urges  on 
'"^  consciences  of  men  in  the  natural  course  of  things, 
™^ttheirreason  from  the  first  acknowledges,  that  He 
'*  r»ot  indifferent  to  human  conduct.  To  say  that 
'"*iSe  do  not  fall  within  the  ordinary  course  of  His 
ga-v.^grnance,  is  merely  to  say  that  they  prejudgments; 
^'"*ich,  in  the  common  meaning  of  the  word,  stand  for 
^^^nts  extraordinary  and  unexpected.  That  such  do 
^»ce  place  under  the  Christian  Dispensation,  is  suffi- 
^^^ntiy  proved  by  the  history  of  Ananias  and  Sapphira. 
^t  is  remarkable  too,  that  the  similar  occuiTences, 
^'^ich  happen  at  the  present  day,  are  generally  con- 
nected with  some  unusual  perjury  or  extreme  blas- 
t-phcmy;  and,  though  we  may  not  infer  the  sin 
"  the  circumstance  of  the  temporal  infliction, 
fyet,  the  commission  of  the  sin  being  ascertained, 
r'We  mav  well  account,  that  its  guilt  is  providentially 

2  yo  Consequences  of  the  Nicene  CvunciL  [chap.  hi. 

impressed  on  the  minds  and  enlarged  in  the  esti- 
mation of  the  multitude,  by  the  visible  penalty  by 
which  it  is  followed.  Nor  do  we  in  such  cases  neces- 
sarily pass  any  absolute  sentence  upon  the  person, 
who  appears  to  be  the  object  of  Divine  Visita- 
tion ;  but  merely  upon  the  particular  act  which 
provoked  it,  and  which  has  its  fearful  character  of  evil 
stamped  upon  it,  independent  of  the  punishment  which 
draws  our  attention  to  it.  The  man  of  God,  who 
prophesied  against  the  altar  in  Bethel,  is  not  to  be 
regarded  by  the  light  of  his  last  act,  though  a  judg- 
ment followed  it,  but  according  to  the  general  tenor 
of  his  life.  Arius  also  must  thus  be  viewed  ;  though, 
unhappily,  his  closing  deed  is  but  the  seal  of  a  pre- 
varicating and  presumptuous  career. 

Athanasius,  who  is  one  of  the  authorities  from 
whom  the  foregoing  account  is  taken,  received  it  from 
Macarius,  a  presbyter  of  the  Church  of  Constanti- 
nople, who  was  in  that  city  at  the  time.  He  adds, 
*' while  the  Church  was  rejoicing  at  the  deliverance, 
Alexander  administered  the  communion  in  pious  and 
orthodox  form,  praying  with  all  the  brethren  and 
glorifying  God  greatly ;  not  as  if  rejoicing  over  his 
death,  (God  forbid  !  for  to  all  men  it  is  appointed 
once  to  die,)  but  because  in  this  event  there  was 
displayed  somewhat  more  than  a  human  judgment. 
For  the  Lord  Himself,  judging  between  the  threats  of 
the  Eusebians  and  the  prayer  of  Alexander,  has  in 
this  event  given  sentence  against  the  heresy  of  the 
Arians  ;  showing  it  to  be  unworthy  of  ecclesiastical 
fellowship,  and  manifesting  to  all,  that  though  it  have 
the  patronage  of  Emperor  and  of  all  men,  yet  that  by 
the  Church  itself  it  is  condemned  2." 

'  Epist..  ad  Scrap.  4 




The  death  of  Arius  was  productive  of  no  important 

consequences  in  the  history  of  liis  party.     They  had 

never  deferred  to  him  as  their  leader,  and  since  the 

Nicenc  Council  had  even  abandoned  his  creed.     The 

toeoJc^  of  the  Eclectics  had  opened  to  Eusebius  of 

t-ssarea  a  language  less  obnoxious  to  the  Catholics 

^d  to  Constantine,  than  that  into  which  he  had  been 

telraycd  in  Palestine  ;  while  his  namesake,  possessing 

"^  Confidence  of  the  Emperor,  was  enabled  to  wield 

"^"^-pons  more  decisive  in  the  controversy  than  those 

""'cTi  Arius  had  used.    From  that  time  Semi-Arianism 

''^      their   profession,   and   calumny    their    weapon, 

""'    the  deposition,  by  legal  process,  of  their  Catholic 

^Pt*onents,     This  is  the  character  of  their  proceedings 

*"*T  A.D.  328  to  A.D.  350;  when  circumstances  led 

»T[i  to  adopt  a  third  creed,  and  enabled  them  to 

tort  it  by  open  force. 


7'hc  Eitscbians. 

It  may  at  first  sight  excite  our  surprise,  thai  men 
who  were  so  little  careful  to  be  consistent  in  their 
professions  of  faith,  should  be  at  the  pains  to  find 
evasions  for  a  test,  which  they  might  have  subscribed  as 
a  matter  of  course,  and  then  dismissed  from  their 
thoughts.  But,  not  to  mention  the  natural  desire  &f 
continuing  an  opposition  to  which  they  had  once  com- 
mitted themselves,  and  especially  after  a  defeat, 
there  is,  moreover,  that  in  religious  mj'steries  which  is 
ever  distasteful  to  secular  minds.  The  mar\-eIloiis, 
which  is  sure  to  excite  the  impatience  and  resentment 
of  the  baffled  reason,  becomes  insupportable  when 
found  in  those  solemn  topics,  which  it  would  fain 
look  upon,  as  necessary  indeed  for  the  uneducated, but 
irrelevant  when  addressed  to  those  who  are  already 
skilled  in  the  knowledge  and  the  superficial  decencies 
of  virtue.  The  difficulties  of  science  may  be  dis- 
missed from  the  mind,  and  virtually  forgotten;  tbc 
precepts  of  morality,  imperative  as  they  are,  may  be 
received  with  the  condescension,  and  applied  with  th^ 
modifications,  of  a  self-applauding  refinement.  But 
what  at  once  demands  attention,  yet  refuses  to  satislV 
curiosity,  places  itself  above  the  human  mind,  imprinO 
on  it  the  thought  of  Him  who  is  eternal,  and  enforce* 
the  necessity  of  obedience  for  its  own  sake.  And 
thus  it  becomes  to  the  proud  and  irreverent,  what  iht 
consciousness  of  guilt  is  to  the  sinner ;  a  sjiectK 
haunting  the  field,  and  disturbing  the  complacfOO'- 
of  tlieir  intellectual  investigations.  In  this  at  IcaA 
throughout  their  changes,  the  Euscbians  are  coiw*- 
tent, — ill  their  hatred  of  the  Sacred  Myslcr/. 

The  Eusebiaiis. 


It  has  sometimes  been  scornfuUy  said,  on  the  otlier 
Jiancl,  ibat  the  zeal  of  Christians,  in  the  discussion  of 
theological  subjects,  has  increased  with  the  mystcrious- 
ness  of  the  doctrine  in  dispute.  There  is  no  reason 
why  wc  should  shrink  from  the  avowal.  Doubtless, 
^  Subject  that  is  dear  to  us,  does  become  more  deeply 
fixed  in  our  affections  by  its  very  peculiarities  and 
incidental  obscurities.  We  desire  to  revere  what  we 
already  love;  and  we  seek  for  the  materials  of  reve- 
rence in  such  parts  of  it,  as  exceed  our  intelligence 
Or  imagination.  It  should  therefore  excite  our  devout 
gratitude,  to  reficct  how  the  truth  has  been  revealed  to 
Us  in  Scripture  in  the  most  practical  manner;  so  as 
both  to  humble  and  to  win  over,  while  it  consoles,  those 
who  really  love  it.  Moreover,  with  reference  to  the 
particular  mystery  under  consideration,  since  a  belief 
in  our  Lord's  Divinity  is  closely  connected  {how,  it 
matters  not)  with  deep  religious  feeling  generally, — 
involving  a  sense  both  of  our  need  and  of  the  value 
of  the  blessings  which  He  has  procured  for  us,  and 
an  emancipation  from  the  tyranny  of  the  visible 
world,— it  is  not  wonderful,  that  those,  who  would 
confine  our  knowledge  of  God  to  things  seen,  should 
dislike  to  hear  of  His  true  and  only  Image.  If  the 
unbeliever  has  attempted  to  account  for  the  rise  of  the 
doctrine,  by  the  alleged  natural  growth  of  a  veneration 
for  the  Pei'son  and  acts  of  the  Redeemer,  let  it  at  least 
be  allowed  to  Christians  to  reverse  the  process  of 
gtflrgument,  and  to  maintain  rather,  that  a  low  estima- 
[on  of  the  evangelical  blessings  leads  to  unworthy 
inceptions  of  the  Author  of  them.  In  the  case  of 
men  it  will  show  itself  in  a  sceptical  neglect  of  the 
ibject  of  religion  altogether :  while  ecclesiastics,  on 

274  ^^^  Eusedians.  [chap.  iv. 

whose  minds  religion  is  forced,  are  tempted  either  to 
an  undue  exaltation  of  their  order,  or  to  a  creed  dis- 
honourable to  their  Lord.  The  Eusebians  adopted 
the  latter  alternative,  and  so  merged  the  supremacy  of 
Divine  Truth  amid  the  multifarious  religions  and 
philosophies  of  the  world. 

Their  skilfulness  in  reasoning  and  love  of  disputa- 
tion afford  us  an  additional  explanation  of  their  per- 
tinacious opposition  to  the  Nicene  Creed.  Though,  in 
possessing  the  favour  of  the  Imperial  Court,  they  had 
already  the  substantial  advantages  of  victory,  they 
disdained  success  without  a  battle.  They  loved  the 
excitement  of  suspense,  and  the  triumph  of  victory. 
And  this  sophistical  turn  of  mind  accounts,  not  only 
for  their  incessant  wranglings,  but  for  their  frequent 
changes  of  view,  as  regards  the  doctrine  in  dispute. 
It  may  be  doubted  whether  men,  so  practised  in  the 
gymnastics  of  the  Aristotelic  school,  could  carefully 
develope  and  consistently  maintain  a  definite  view  of 
doctrine  ;  especially  in  a  case,  where  the  difficulties  of 
an  unsound  cause  combined  with  their  own  habitual 
restlessness  and  levity  to  defeat  the  attempt.  Ac- 
cordingly, in  their  conduct  of  the  argument,  they 
seem  to  be  aiming  at  nothing  beyond  "living  from 
hand  to  mouth,"  as  the  saying  is  ;  availing  themselves 
of  some  or  other  expedient,  which  would  suffice  to 
carry  them  through  existing  difficulties ;  admissions, 
whether  to  satisfy  the  timid  conscience  of  Constantius, 
or  to  deceive  the  Western  Church  ;  or  statements  so 
faintly  precise  and  so  decently  ambiguous,  as  to 
embrace  the  greatest  number  of  opinions  possible,  and 
to  deprive  religion,  ia  consequence,  of  its  austere  and 
commandin<3;  aspect 

The  Eusebians. 

That  I  may  not  seem  to  be  indulging  in  vague 
accusation,  I  here  present  the  reader  with  a  sketch  of 
the  lives  of  the  chief  of  them  ;  from  which  he  will  be 
able  to  decide,  whether  the  above  explanation  of  their 
conduct  is  unnecessary  or  gratuitous. 

The  most  distinguished  of  the  party,  after  Euse- 

bius  himself,  for  ability,  learning,  and  unscrupulousness, 

was  Acacius,  the  successor  of  the  other  Eusebius  in  the 

see  of  Cassarea.     He  had  been  his  pupil,  and  on  his 

death  inherited  his  library.     Jerome  ranks  him  among 

tile  most  learned  commentatoi-s  on  Scripture.      The 

Arian  historian,   Philostorgius,  praises   his   boldness, 

penetration,  and  perspicuity  in  unfolding  his  views : 

and  Sozomen  speaks  of  his  talents  and  influence  as 

equal  to  the  execution  of  the  most  difficult  designs  3. 

He  began  at  first  with  professing  himself  a  Semi-Arian 

2fter  the  example  of  Eusebius,  his  master ;  next,  he 

''eeame  the  founder  of  the  party,  which  will  presently 

°^  described  as  the  Homaaii  or  Scriptural ;  thirdly,  he 

joined  himself  to  the  Anomosans  or  pure  Arians,  so 

^cvcn  to  be  the  intimate  associate  of  the  wretched 

Actius ;  fourthly,  at  the  command  of  Constantius,  he 

QCSerted  and  excommunicated   him  ;    fifthly,   in  th*; 

'''■''gii  of  the  Catholic  Jovian,  he  signed  the  HomoUsion 

Or  symbol  of  Nicjea. 

Oeorge,  of  Laodiciea,  another  of  the  leading  mem- 
bers of  the  Eusebian  party,  was  originally  a  presbyter 
*^'  the  Alexandrian  Church,  and  deposed  by  Alexan- 
°*^''  for  the  assistance  afforded  by  him  to  Arius  at 
Nicoinedia.  At  the  end  of  the  reign  of  Constantius, 
''-  professed  for  a  while  the  sentiments  of  the  Semi- 

tiether  seriously  or  not,  we  have  not  the 

T  z 

276  The  Ettscbians.  [cmap.iv^ 

means  of  deciding,  although  the  character  given  othivtC^ 
by  Athanasius,  who  is  generally  candid  in  his  judg — ^ 
ments,  is  unfavourable  to  his  sincerity.     Certainly  he   ^ 
deserted  the  Semi-Arians  in  no  long  time,  and  died 
an  Anomoean.      He    is   also   accused   of  open  and 
habitual  irregularities  of  life. 

Leontius,  the  most  crafty  of  his  party,  was  pro- 
moted by  the  Arians  to  the  see  of  Antioch  ^ ;  and 
though  a  pupil  of  the  school  of  Lucian,  a^id  consis- 
tently attached  to  the  opinions  of  Arius  throughout 
his  life,  he  5^eems  to  have  conducted  himself  in  his 
high  position  with  moderation  and  good  temper.  The 
Catholic .  party  was  at  that  time  still  strong  in  the 
city,  particularly  among  the  laity;  the  crimes  of 
Stephen  and  Placillus,  his  immediate  Arian  predeces- 
sors, had  brought  discredit  on  the  heretical  cause ; 
and  the  theological  opinions  of  Constantius,  who  was 
attached  to  the  Semi-Arian  doctrine,  rendered  it 
dangerous  to  avow  the  plain  blasphemies  of  the  first 
founder  of  their  creed.  Accordingly,  with  the  view  of 
seducing  the  Catholics  to  his  own  communion,  he  was 
anxious  to  profess  an  agreement  with  the  Church, 
even  where  he  held  an  opposite  opinion ;  and  we  are 
told  that  in  the  public  doxology,  which  was  practically 
the  test  of  faith,  not  even  the  nearest  to  him  in  the 
congregation  could  hear  from  him  more  than  the 
words  "  for  ever  and  ever,"  with  which  it  concludes. 
It  was  apparently  with  the  same  design,  that  he  con- 
verted the  almshouses  of  the  city,  destined  for  the 
reception  of  strangers,  into  seminaries  for  propagating 
the   Christian   faith ;    and   published   a    panegyrical 

*  A  stransre  and  scandalous  transaction  in  early  life,  gave  him   thft 
applanation  of  6  aToKoiro^     Athan.  ad  Monach.  4. 




account  of  St.  Babylaa,  when  his  body  to  be 
removed  to  Daphne,  by  way  of  consecrating  a  place 
which  had  been  before  devoted  to  sensual  excesses. 
In  the  meanwhile,  he  gradually  weakened  the  Church, 
by  a  systematic  promotion  of  heretical,  and  a  dis- 
countenance: of  the  ortliodox  Clergy ;  one  of  his  most 
scandalous  acts  being  his  ordination  of  Aetius,  the 
founder  of  the  Anomceans,  who  was  afterwards  pro- 
iioted  to  the  episcopacy  in  the  reign  of  Julian. 

Eudoxius,  the  successor  of  Lcontius,  in  the  see  of 
A.ntioch,  was  his  fellow-pupil  in  the  school  of  Lucian. 
We  is  said  to  have  been  converted  to  Semi-Arianism 
fiy-  the  writings   of  the   Sophist   Asterius  ;   but   he 
Si^terwards  joined  the  Anomceans,  and  got  possession 
<^r  the  patriarchate  of  Constantinople,     It  was  there, 
^t  the  dedication  of  the  cathedral  of  St.  Sophia,  that  he 
ottered  the  wanton  impiety,  which  has  characterized 
*iim  with  a  distinctness,  which  supersedes  all  historical 
notice  of  his  conduct,  or  discussion  of  his  religious 
Opinions.      "When  Eudoxius,"  says   Socrates,   "had 
taken  his  seat  on  the  episcopal  throne,  his  first  words 
were  these  celebrated  ones,    '  the   Father   is  aa-efftjv, 
irreligious ;    the   Son   eyi7e;8^s,   religious.'      When   a 
noise  and  confusion  ensued,  he  added,    'Be  not  dis- 
tressed at  what  I  say;  for  the  Father  is  irreligious,  as 
worshipping  none;  but  the  Son  is  religious  towards  the 
Father.'     On  this  the  tumult  ceased,  and  in  its  place 
an  intemperate  laughter  seized  the  congregation  ;  and 
-^  remains  as  a  good  saying  even  to  this  timeS." 

Hist.  II.  43.  [EuaiBila.  iaiB"a,  lua 
in  ihe  Innguage  of  .Alhannalu;  or  bis  age, 
,  orthodox,  &[^  This  circum=tantu  gives  il 
la  tTBcealile  to  St.   Paul's  words,   "Urcat 

2  78  The,  Eusebians.  I  chap.  iv. 

Valens,  Bishop  of  Mursa,  in  Pannonia,  shall  close 
this  list  of  Eusebian  Prelates.  He  was  one  of  the  im- 
mediate disciples  of  Arius ;  and,  from  an  early  age,  the 
champion  of  his  heresy  in  the  Latin  Church.  In  the 
conduct  of  the  controversy,  he  inherited  more  of  the 
plain  dealing  as  well  as  of  the  principles  of  his  master, 
than  his  associates  ;  he  was  an  open  advocate  of  the 
Anomoean  doctrine,  and  by  his  personal  influence 
with  Constantius  balanced  the  power  of  the  Semi- 
Arian  party,  derived  from  the  Emperor's  private 
attachment  to  their  doctrine.  The  favour  of  Con- 
stantius was  gained  by  a  fortunate  artifice,  at  the  time 
the  latter  was  directing  his  arms  against  the  tyrant 
Magnentius.  "  While  the  two  armies  were  engaged 
in  the  plains  of  Mursa,"  says  Gibbon,  "and  the  fate  of 
the  two  rivals  depended  on  the  chance  of  war,  the  son 
of  Constantine  passed  the  anxious  moments  in  a 
church  of  the  martyrs,  under  the  walls  of  the  city. 
His  spiritual  comforter  Valens,  the  Arian  Bishop  of 
the  diocese,  employed  the  most  artful  precautions  to 
obtain  such  early  intelligence,  as  might  secure  either 
his  favour  or  his  escape.  A  secret  chain  of  swift  and 
trusty  messengers  informed  him  of  the  vicissitudes  of 
the  battle;  and  while  the  courtiers  stood  trembling 
around  their  affrighted  master,  Valens  assured  him  that 

j^odliness  (cuorcjScta?),"  orthodoxy.  Vide  Athan.  Opp.  passim.  Thus 
Arius  also  ends  his  letter  to  Eusebius  with  "  dXi/^ai?  cvo-c)8t€."  And  St. 
Basil,  defending  his  own  freedom  from  Arian  error,  says  that  St.  Macrina, 
his  grandmother,  **  moulded  him  from  his  infancy  in  the  dogmas  of 
religion  (cuo'cjSctas),"  and  that,  when  he  grew  up,  and  travelled,  he 
ever  chose  those  for  his  fathers  and  guides,  whom  he  found  walking 
according  to  *'  the  rule  of  religion  (cvo-c)8cias)  handed  down.**  Ep.204. 
6.  Vide  also,  Basil.  Opp.  t.  2,  p.  599.  Greg.  Naz.  Orat.  ii.  80.  Euseb. 
cont.  Marc.  i.  7.  Joan.  Antioch.  apud  Facund.  i.  i.  Sozomen,  i.  20.  as 
supr.  note  p.  140.] 

the  Gallic  legions  gavp  way;  and  insinuated,  ivith 
some  presence  of  mind,  that  the  glorious  event  had 
been  revealed  to  him  by  an  Angel.  The  grateful 
Emperor  ascribed  his  success  to  the  merits  and  inter- 
cession of  the  Bishop  of  Mursa,  whose  faith  had 
deserved  the  public  and  miraculous  approbation  of 
Heaven*,"  — — i 

Such  were  the  leaders  of  the  Eusebian  or  Court 
faction ;  and  on  the  review  of  them,  do  we  not  seem 
lo  see  in  each  a  fresh  exhibition  of  their  great  type 
and  forerunner,  Paulus,  on  one  side  or  other  of  his 
character,  though  surpassing  him  in  extravagance  of 
conduct,  as  possessing  a  wider  field,  and  more  power- 
ful incentives  for  ambitious  and  energetic  exertion  ? 
We  see  the  same  accommodation  of  the  Christian 
Creed  to  the  humour  of  an  earthly  Sovereign,  the 
same  fertility  of  disputation  in  support  of  their  version 
of  it,  the  same  reckless  profanation  of  things  sacred, 
the  same  patient  dissemination  of  error  for  the 
services  of  the  age  after  them  ;  and,  if  they  are  free 
from  the  personal  immoralities  of  their  master,  they 
balance  this  favourable  trait  of  character  by  the  cruel 
and  hard-hearted  temper,  which  discovers  itself  in 
their  pei-secution  of  the  Catholics. 

This  persecution  was  conducted  till  the  middle  of 
the  century  according  to  the  outward  forms  of  eccle- 
siastical law.  Chaises  of  various  kinds  were  preferred 
in  Council  against  the  orthodox  prelates  of  the  prin- 
,  with  a  profession  at  least  of  regularity, 
itever  inifairness  there  might  be  in  the  details  of 

cipal  see 

28o  Tlie  Eusebians.  [chap.  iv. 

the  proceedings.  By  this  me^s  all  the  most  power- 
ful Churches  of  Eastern  Christendom,  by  the  com- 
mencement of  the  reign  of  Constantius  (A.D.  337),  had 
been  brought  under  the  influence  of  the  Arians  ;  Con- 
stantinople, Heraclea,  Hadrianople,  Ephesus,  Ancyra, 
both  Caesareas,  Antioch,  Laodicaea,  and  Alexandria. 
Eustathius  of  Antioch,  for  instance,  had  incurred  their 
hatred,  by  his  strenuous  resistance  to  the  heresy  in 
the  seat  of  its  first  origin.  After  the  example  of  his 
immediate  predecessor  Philogonius,  he  refused  com- 
munion to  Stephen,  Leontius,  Eudoxius,  George,  and 
others ;  and  accused  Eusebius  of  Caesarea  openly  of 
having  violated  the  faith  of  Nicaea.  The  heads  of  the 
party  assembled  in  Council  at  Antioch  ;  and,  on 
charges  of  heresy  and  immorality,  which  they  pro- 
fessed to  be  satisfactorily  maintained,  pronounced 
sentence  of  deposition  against  him.  Constantine 
banished  him  to  Philippi,  together  with  a  considerable 
number  of  the  priests  and  deacons  of  his  Church. 
So  again,  Marcellus  of  Ancyra,  another  of  their  in- 
veterate opponents,  was  deposed,  anathematized,  and 
banished  by  them,  with  greater  appearance  of  justice, 
on  the  ground  of  his  leaning  to  the  errors  of  Sabellius. 
But  their  most  rancorous  enmity  and  most  persever- 
ing efforts  were  directed  against  the  high-minded 
Patriarch  of  Alexandria  ;  and,  in  illustration  of  their 
principles  and  conduct,  the  circumstances  of  his  first 
persecution  shall  here  be  briefly  related. 

When  Eusebius  of  Nicomedia  failed  to  effect  the 
restoration  of  Arius  into  the  Alexandrian  Church  by 
persuasion,  he  had  threatened  to  gain  his  end  by 
harsher  means.  Calumnies  were  easily  invented 
against  the  man  who  had  withstood  his  purpose :  and 

Tlt£  Ensebians. 

'£  so  happened,  that  wiSlins  tools  were  found 
spot  for  conducting  the  attack.     The  Meletian  sec- 
taries have  already  been  noticed,  as  being  the  original 
associates  of  Ariiis  ;  who  had  troubled  the  Church  by 
'slicing  part  in  their  schism,  before  he  promulgated  his 
ptijculiar  heresy.     They  were  called   after   Meletius, 
feishop   of  Lycopolis   in   the  Thebaid;    who,  being 
cleposed   for  lapsing   in   the   Dioclesian  persecutio.n, 
Separated   from   the   Catholics,   and,   propagating    a 
Spurious   succession  of  clei^  by  his  episcopal  pre- 
»-ogative,  formed  a  powerful  body  in  the  heart  of  the 
Egyptian   Church.     The  Council  of  Niciea,  desirous 
of  terminating  the  disorder  in  the  most  temperate 
manner,  instead  of  deposing  the  Meletian  bishops,  had 
arranged,  that  they  should  retain  a  nominal  rank  in 
the  sees,  in  which  they  had  respectively  placed  them- 
selves ;   while,  by  forbidding  them  to  exercise  their 
episcopal  functions,  it  provided  for  the  termination  of 
the  schism  at  their  death.     But,  with  the  bad  fortune 
which  commonly  attends  conciUatory  measures,  unless 
accompanied  by  such  a  display  of  vigour  as  shows 
that  concession  is  but  condescension,  the   clemency 
was  forgotten  in  the  restriction,  which  irritated,  with- 
out repressing  them  ;  and,  being  bent  on  the  overthrow 
of  the  dominant  Church,  they  made  a  sacrilice  of  their 
principles,   which  had  hitherto  been   orthodox,   and 
joined   the   Eusebians.      By  this  intrigue,  the  latter 
gained   an  entrance  into  the   Egyptian   Church,   as 
effectual  as  that  which  had  already  been  opened  to 
them,  by  means  of  their  heresy  itself,  in  Syria  and 
Asia  Minor'. 

die  f 

KThe  Melellans,  on  1 

282  The  Eusebians.  [chap.  iv. 

Charges  against  Athanasius  were  produced  and  ex- 
amined in  Councils  successively  held  at  Caesarea  and 
Tyre  (a.D.  333—335) ;  the  Meletians  being  the  ac- 
cusers, and  the  Eusebians  the  judge?  in  the  trial.  At 
an  earlier  date,  it  had  been  attempted  to  convict  him 
of  political  offences ;  but,  on  examination,  Constantine 
became  satisfied  of.  his  innocence.  It  had  been 
represented,  that,  of  his  own  authority,  he  had 
imposed  and  rigorously  exacted  a  duty  upon  the 
Egyptian  linen  cloth  ;  the  pretended  tribute  being  in 
fact  nothing  beyond  the  offerings,  which  pious  persons 
had  made  to  the  Church,  in  the  shape  of  vestments 
for  the  service  of  the  sanctuary.  It  had  moreover 
been  alleged,  that  he  had  sent  pecuniary  aid  to  one 
Philumenus,  who  was  in  rebellion  against  the  Em- 
peror; as  at  a  later  period  they  accused  him  of  a 
design  of  distressing  Constantinople,  by  stopping  the 
corn  vessels  of  Alexandria,  destined  for  the  supply  of 
the  metropolis. 

The  charges  brought  against  him  before  these 
Councils  were  both  of  a  civil  and  of  an  ecclesiastical 
character ;  that  he,  or  Macarius,  one  of  his  deacons, 
had  broken  a  consecrated  chalice,  and  the  holy  table 
itself,  and  had  thrown  the  sacred  books  into  the  fire ; 
next,  that  he  had  killed  Arsenius,  a  Meletian  bishop, 
whose  hand,  amputated  and  preserved  for  magical 
purposes,  had  been  found  in  Athanasius's  house.  The 
latter  of  these  strange  accusations  was  refuted  at  the 
Council  of  Caesarea  by  Arsenius  himself,  whom  Atha- 
nasius had  gained,  and  who,  on  the  production  of  a 

Athanasius,  Constantine,  true  to  his  object  of  restoring  tranquillity  to 
the  Church,  while  he  banished  Athanasius  to  Treves,  banished  also 
John,  the  leader  of  the  Meletians,  who  had  been  forward  in  procuring  his 


The  Eusehians. 


human  hand  at  the  trial,  presented  himself  before  the 

I  judges,  thus  destroying  the  circumstantial  evidence  by 

[which  it  was  to  be  identified   as  his.     The   former 

kcharge  was  refuted  at  Tyre  by  the  testimony  of  the 

■  Egyptian  bishops  ;   who,  after  exposing  the  equivo- 

■i^ting  evidence  of  the  accuser,  went  on  to  prove  that 

l^t  the  place  where  their  Metropolitan  was  said  to  have 

rllbi'oken  the  chalice,  there  was  neither  church,  nor  altar, 

r.nor  chalice,  existing.     These  were  the  principal  a!- 

rlegations  brought  against  him  ;    and  their  cxtraordi- 

[  nary  absurdity,  (certain  as  the  charges  are  as  matters 

1  of  history,  from  evidence  of  various  kinds,)  can  only 

f  "be  accounted  for  by  supposing,  that  the  Eusebians 

I  were  even  then  too  powerful  and  too  bold,  to  care  for 

much  more  than  the  bare  forms  of  law,  or  to  scruple 

at   any   evidence,   which   the   unskilfulness   of   their 

Egyptian  coadjutoi-s  might  set  before  them.    A  charge 

of  violence  in  his  conduct  towards  certain  Meletians 

was  added  to  the  above ;  and,  as  some  say,  a  still 

L  more  frivolous  accusation  of  incontinence,  but  whether 

f  this  was  ever  brought,  is  more  than  doubtful. 

C^sarea  and  Tyre  were  places  too  public  even  for 
Bi^c  audacity  of  the  Eusebians,  when  the  facts  of  the 
Kcase  were  so  plainly  in  favour  of  the  accused.  It  was 
I410W  proposed  that  a  commission  of  inquiry  should  be 
f  sent  to  the  Marcotis,  which  was  in  the  neighbourhood, 
Eand  formed  part  of  the  diocese,  of  Alexandria,  and 
I  Was  the  scene  of  the  alleged  profanation  of  the  sacred 
f. chalice:  The  leading  members  of  this  commission 
I  were  Valens  and  Ursacius,  Theognis,  Maris,  and  two 
I  others,  all  Eusebians  ;  they  took  with  them  the  chief 
I  .accuser  of  Athanasius  as  their  guide  and  host,  leaving 
I.Athanasius    and    Macarius    at    Tyre,    and    refusing 

284  The  Eusebians.  [chap.  iv. 

admittance  into  the  court  of  inquiry  to  such  of  the 
clergy  of  the  Mareotis,  as  were  desirous  of  defending 
their  Bishop's  interests  in  his  absence.  The  issue 
of  such  proceedings  may  be  anticipated.  On  the 
return  of  the  commission  to  Tyre,  Athanasius  was 
formally  condemned  of  rebellion,  sedition,  and  a 
tyrannical  use  of  his  episcopal  power,  of  murder, 
sacrilege,  and  magic ;  was  deposed  from  the  see  of 
Alexandria,  and  prohibited  from  ever  returning  to 
that  city.  Constantine  confirmed  the  sentence  of  the 
Council,  and  Athanasius  was  banished  to  GauL 

It  has  often  been  remarked  that  persecutions  of 
Christians,  as  in  St.  Paul's  case,  "  fall  out  rather  unto 
the  furtherance  of  the  Gospel^. "  The  dispersion  of  the 
disciples,  after  the  martyrdom  of  St.  Stephen,  intro- 
duced  the  word  of  truth  together  with  themselves 
among  the  Samaritans ;  and  in  the  case  before  us,  the 
exile  of  Athanasius  led  to  his  introduction  to  the 
younger  Constantine,  son  of  the  great  Emperor  of 
that  name,  who  warmly  embraced  his  cause,  and  gave 
him  the  opportunity  of  rousing  the  zeal,  and  gaining 
the  personal  friendship  of  the  Catholics  of  the  West 
Constans  also,  another  son  of  Constantine,  declared  in 
his  favour ;  and  thus,  on  the  death  of  their  father, 
which  took  place  two  years  after  the  Council  of  Tyre, 
one  third  alone  of  his  power,  in  the  person  of  the  Semi- 
Arian  Constantius,  Emperor  of  the  East,  remained 
with  that  party,  which,  while  Constantine  lived,  was 
able  to  wield  the  whole  strength  of  the  State  against 

'  Phil.  i.  IS* 

StcT.  1.]  The  Eusebians. 

the  orthodox  Bishops,  The  support  of  the  Roman 
See  was  a  Still  more  important  advantage  gained  by 
Athanasius.  Rome  was  the  natural  mediator  between 
Alexandria  and  Antioch,  and  at  that  time  possessed 
extensive  influence  among  the  Churches  of  the  West. 
Accordingly,  when  Constantius  re-commcnced  the 
persecution,  to  which  his  father  had  been  persuaded, 
the  exiles  betool<  themselves  to  Rome  ;  and  about  the 
year  340  or  341  we  read  of  Bishops  from  Thrace, 
Syria,  Phcenicia,  and  Palestine,  collected  there,  besides 
a  multitude  of  Presbyters,  and  among  the  former, 
Athanasius  himself,  Marcellus,  Asclepas  of  Gaza,  and 
Luke  of  Hadrianoplc.  The  first  act  of  the  Roman 
See  in  their  favour  was  the  holding  a  provincial 
Council,  in  which  the  charges  against  Athanasius  and 
Marcellus  were  examined,  and  pronounced  to  be 
untenable.  And  its  next  act  was  to  advocate  the  sum- 
moning of  a  Council  of  the  whole  Church  with  the 
same  purpose,  referring  it  to  Athanasius  to  select  a 
place  of  meeting,  where  his  cause  might  be  secure 
of  a  more  impartial  hearing,  than  it  had  met  with  at 
CKsarea  and  Tyre. 

The  Eusebians,  on  the  other  hand,  perceiving  the 
danger  which  their  interests  would  sustain,  should  a 
Council  be  held  at  any  distance  from  their  own 
peculiar  territory,  determined  on  anticipating  the 
projected  Council  by  one  of  their  own,  in  which  they 
might  both  confirm  the  sentence  of  deposition  against 
Athanasius,  and,  if  possible,  contrive  a  confession  of 
faith,  to  ailay  the  suspicions  which  the  Occidentals 
entertained  of  their  orthodoxy^.     This  was  the  occa- 

c  Count^ll,  ihe  Eascbiaiis  did  npl  dare  avow  I' 
>  lime,  but  merely  allempied  Ihg  banishmen 

286  The  Eusebians,  [chap.  iv. 

sion  of  the  Council  of  the  Dedication,  as  it  is  called, 
held  by  them  at  Antioch,  in  the  year  341,  and  which 
is  one  of  the  most  celebrated  Councils  of  the  century. 
It  was  usual  to  solemnize  the  consecration  of  places 
of  worship,  by  an  attendance  of  the  principal  prelates 
of  the  neighbouring  districts  ;  and  the  great  Church 
of  the  Metropolis  of  Syria,  called  the  Dominicum 
Aureum,  which  had  just  been  built,  afforded  both  the 
pretext  and  the  name  to  their  assembly.  Between 
ninety  and  a  hundred  bishops  came  together  on  this 
occasion,  all  Arians  or  Arianizers,  and  agreed  without 
difficulty  upon  the  immediate  object  of  the  Council, 
the  ratification  of  the  Synods  of  Caesarea  and  Tyre  in 
condemnation  of  Athanasius. 

So  far  their  undertaking  was  in  their  own  hands ; 
but  a  more  difficult  task  remained  behind,  viz.,  to  gain 
the  approval  and  consent  of  the  Western  Church,  by 
an  exposition  of  the  articles  of  their  faith.  Not 
intending  to  bind  themselves  by  the  decision  at 
Nicaea,  they  had  to  find  some  substitute  for  the  Homo^ 
iision.  With  this  view  four,  or  even  five  creeds,  more 
or  less  resembling  the  Nicene  in  language,  were  suc- 
cessively adopted.  The  first  was  that  ascribed  to  the 
martyr  Lucian,  though  doubts  are  entertained  con- 
cerning its  genuineness.  It  is  in  itself  almost  unex- 
ceptionable ;  and,  had  there  been  no  controversies 
on  the  subjects  contained  in  it,  would  have  been  a 
satisfactory  evidence  of  the  orthodoxy  of  its  promul-r 
gators.  The  Son  is  therein  styled  the  exact  Image 
of   the   substance,    will,    power,    and    glory  of   the 

Athanasius,  and  the  restoration  of  Anus.  Their  first  Council  was  A.D. 
341,  four  years  after  Constantine's  death  and  Constantius's  accession.**— 
Ath.  Tr.  vol.  i.  pp.  92,  93.] 

SECT.  I,]  The  Eusebiams.  287 

Father  ;  and  the  Three  Persons  of  tlic  Holy  Trinity 
are  said  to  be  three  in  substance,  one  in  will'.  An 
evasive  condemnation  was  added  of  the  Arian  tenets  ; 
sufficient,  as  it  might  seem,  to  delude  the  Latins,  who 
were  unskilled  in  the  subtleties  of  the  question.  For 
instance,  it  was  denied  that  our  Lord  was  born  "  in 
time,"  but  in  the  heretical  school,  as  was  shown  above, 
time  was  supposed  to  commence  with  the  creation  of 
the  world  ;  and  it  was  denied  that  He  was  "  in  the 
number  of  the  creatures,"  it  being  their  doctrine,  that 
He  was  the  sole  immediate  work  of  God,  and,  as  such, 
not  like  others,  but  separate  from  the  whole  creation, 
of  which  indeed  He  was  the  author.  Next,  for  some 
or  other  reason,  two  new  creeds  were  proposed,  and 
partially  adopted  by  the  Council  ;  the  same  in  char- 
acter of  doctrine,  but  shorter.  These  three  were  all 
circulated,  and  more  or  less  received  in  the  neighbour- 
ing Churches  ;  but,  on  consideration,  none  of  them 
seemed  adequate  to  the  object  in  view,  that  of  recom- 
mending the  Eusebians  to  the  distant  Churches  of 
tlie  West.  Accordingly,  a  fourth  formulary  was  drawn 
up  after  a  few  months'  delay,  among  others  by  Mark, 
Bishop  of  Arethusa,  a  Semi-Arian  Bishop  of  religious 
character,  afterwards  to  be  mentioned  ;  its  composers 
were  deputed  to  present  it  to  Constans  ;  and,  this 
creed  proving  unsatisfactory,  a  fifth  confession  was 
drawn  up  with  considerable  care  and  ability ;  though  it 
too  failed  to  quiet  tlie  suspicions  of  the  Latins.  This 
last  is  called  the  Macrostich,  from  the  number  of  its 
paragraphs,  and  did  not  make  its  appearance  till  three 
years  after  the  former. 

^Bncc,  or  PCI9C 

Exai^  image.  airnpaAAaiiTos 
or  pci9aa,  ^otrrao'ts. 

488)  T^he  Eusebians.  [chap.  iv. 

In  truth,  no  such  exposition  of  the  Catholic  faith 
could  satisfy  the  Western  Christians,  while  they  were 
witnesses  to  the  exile  of  its  great  champion  on  account 
of  his  fidelity  to  it.  Here  the  Eusebians  were  wanting 
in  their  usual  practical  shrewdness.  Words,  however 
orthodox,  could  not  weigh  against  so  plain  a  fact.  The 
Occidentals,  however  unskilled  in  the  niceties  of  the 
Greek  language,  were  able  to  ascertain  the  heresy  of 
the  Eusebians  in  their  malevolence  towards  Athana- 
sius.  Nay,  the  anxious  attempts  of  his  enemies,  to 
please  them  by  means  of  a  confession  of  faith,  were 
a  refutation  of  their  pretences.  For,  inasmuch  as  the 
sense  of  the  Catholic  world,  had  already  been  re- 
corded in  the  HomoiisioUy  why  should  they  devise 
a  new  formulary,  if  after  all  they  agreed  with  the 
Church  }  or,  why  should  they  themselves  be  so  fertile 
in  confessions,  if  they  had  all  of  them  but  one  faith  } 
It  is  brought  against  them,  by  Athanasius,  that  in 
their  creeds  they  date  their  exposition  of  the  Catholic 
doctrine,  as  if  it  were  something  new,  instead  simply 
of  its  being  declared,  which  was  the  sole  design  of  the 
Nicene  Fathers  ;  while  at  other  times,  they  affected  to 
acknowledge  the  authority  of  former  Councils,  which 
nevertheless  they  were  indirectly  opposing  2  Under 
these  circumstances  the  Roman  Church,  as  the  repre- 
sentative of  the  Latins,  only  became  more  bent  upon 
the  convocation  of  a  General  Council  in  which  the 
Nicene  Creed  might  be  ratified,  and  any  innovation 
upon  it  reprobated  ;  and  the  innocence  of  Athanasius, 
which  it  had  already  ascertained  in  its  provincial 
Synod,  might  be  formally  proved,  and  proclaimed  to 
+he  whole  of  Christendom.    This  object  was  at  length 

•  Aihan.  dc  Syn.  3.  37. 

SECT.  I.] 

accomplished.  Constans,  whom  Athaiiasius  had  visited 
and  gained,  successfully  exerted  his  influence  with  his 
brother  ConstarL^'ius,  the  Emperor  of  the  East ;  and  a 
Council  of  the  whole  Christian  world  was  summoned 
at  Sardica  for  the  above  purposes,  the  exculpation  of 
Marcelius  and  others  being  included  with  that  of 

Sardica  was  chosen  as  the  place  of  meeting,  as  lying 
on  the  confines  of  the  two  divisions  of  the  Empire.  It 
is  on  the  borders  of  Mcesia,  Thrace,  and  Illyricum, 
and  at  the  foot  of  Mount  Hsemus,  whicli  separates  it 
from  Philippopolis.  There  the  heads  of  the  Christian 
World  assembled  in  the  year  347,  twenty-two  years 
after  the  Niccne  Council,  in  number  above  380 
bishops,  of  whom  seventy-six  were  Arian.  The 
President  of  the  Council  was  the  venerable  Hosius ; 
whoso  name  was  in  itself  a  pledge,  that  the  decision 
of  Nic^a  was  simply  to  be  preserved,  and  no  fresli 
question  raised  on  a  subject  already  exhausted  by 
controversy.  But,  almost  before  the  opening  of  the 
Council,  matters  were  brought  to  a  crisis  ;  a  schism 
took  place  in  its  members  ;  the  Arians  retreated  to 
Philippopolis,  and  there  excommunicated  the  leaders 
of  the  orthodox,  Julius  of  Rome,  Hosius,  and  Pro- 
togencs  of  Sardica,  issued  a  sixth  confession  of  faith, 
and  confirmed  the  proceedings  of  the  Antiochene 
Council  against  Athanasius  and  the  other  exiles. 

This  secession  of  the  Arians  arose  in  consequence 
of  their  f;;iding,  that  Athanasius  was  allowed  a  seat  in 
the  Council ;  the  discussions  of  which  they  refused 
tjo  attend,  while  a  Bishop  took  part  in  them,  who  )iad 

Idy  been  deposed  by  Synods  of  the  Hast.     The 
>dox  replied,  that  a  later  Council,  held  at  Rome, 

290  The  Eusebians.  [chap.  iv. 

had  fully  acquitted  and  restored  him  ;  moreover,  that 
to  maintain  his  guilt  was  but  to  assume  the  principal 
point,  which  they  were  then  assembled  to  debate  ; 
and,  though  very  consistent  with  their  absenting 
themselves  from  the  Council  altogether,  could  not  be 
permitted  to  those,  who  had  by  their  coming  recog- 
nized the  object,  for  which  it  was  called.  Accordingly, 
without  being  moved  by  their  retreat,  the  Council 
proceeded  to  the  condemnation  of  some  of  the  more 
notorious  opponents  among  them  of  the  Creed  of 
Nicaea,  examined  the  charges  against  Athanasius  and 
the  rest,  reviewed  the  acts  of  the  investigations  at  Tyre 
and  the  Mareotis,  which  the  Eusebians  had  sent  to 
Rome  in  their  defence,  and  confirmed  the  decree  of 
the  Council  of  Rome,  in  favour  of  the  accused.  Con- 
stans  enforced  this  decision  on  his  brother  by  the 
arguments  peculiar  to  a  monarch ;  and  the  timid 
Constantius,  yielding  to  fear  what  he  denied  to  justice, 
consented  to  restore  to  Alexandria  a  champion  of  the 
truth,  who  had  been  condemned  on  the  wildest  of 
charges,  by  the  most  hostile  and  unprincipled  of 

The  journey  of  Athanasius  to  Alexandria  elicited 
the  fullest  and  most  satisfactory  testimonies  of  the 
real  orthodoxy  of  the  Eastern  Christians  ;  in  spite  of 
the  existing  cowardice  or  misapprehension,  which 
surrendered  them  to  the  tyrannical  rule  of  a  few 
determined  and  energetic  heretics.  The  Bishops  of 
Palestine,  one  of  the  chief  holds  of  the  Arian  spirit, 
welcomed,  with  the  solemnity  of  a  Council,  a  resto- 
ration, which,  under  the  circumstances  of  the  case,  was 
almost  a  triumph  over  their  own  sovereign  ;  and  so 
excited  was  the  Catholic  feeling  even  at  Antioch,  that 

The  Eussbiaits. 

Constantiiis  feared  to  grant  to  the  Athanasians  a 
single  Church  in  that  city,  lest  it  should  have  been 
the  ruin  of  the  Arian  cause. 

One  of  the  more  important  consequences  of  the 
Council  of  Sardica,  was  the  public  recantation  of 
V'alens,  and  his  accomplice  Ursacius,  Bishop  of  Singi- 
don,  in  Pannonia,  two  of  t!ic  most  inveterate  enemies 
and  calumniators  of  Athanasius.  It  was  addressed  to 
the  Bishop  of  Rome,  and  was  conceived  in  the  follow- 
ing terms :  "  Whereas  we  are  known  heretofore  to 
have  preferred  many  grievous  charges  against  Athana- 
sius the  Bishop,  and,  on  being  put  on  our  defence  by 
your  excellency,  have  failed  to  make  good  our  charges, 
wc  declare  to  your  excellency,  in  the  presence  of  all  the 
presbyters,  our  brethren,  that  all  which  we  have  hereto- 
fore heard  against  the  aforesaid,  is  false,  and  altogether 
foreign  to  his  character ;  and  therefore,  that  we  heartily 
embrace  the  communion  of  the  aforesaid  Athanasius, 
especially  considering  your  Holiness,  according  to 
your  habitual  clemency,  has  condescended  to  pardon 
our  mistake.  Further  we  declare,  that,  r.hould  the 
Orientals  at  any  time,  or  Athanasius,  from  resentful 
feelings,  be  desirous  to  bring  us  to  account,  that  we 
will  not  act  in  the  matter  without  your  sanction.  As 
for  tlie  heretic  Arius,  and  his  partisans,  who  say  that 
*'Oncc  ike  Son  ivas  »oi,"  that  "He  is  of  created  Sub- 
stance" and  that  "He  is  not  the  Son  of  God  before  ail 
time,"  we  anathematize  them  now,  and  once  for  all, 
according  to  our  former  statement  which  we  presented 
at  Milan.  Witnes;;  our  hand,  that  we  condemn  once 
for  all  the  Arian  heresy,  as  we  have  already  said,  and 
its  advocates.  Witness  also  the  hand  of  Ursacius.— 
I,  Ursacius  the  Bishop,  have  set  my  name  to  this 

..  A,-.l.  com 


292  The  Eusebians.  [chap.  iv. 

The  Council  of  Milan,  referred  to  in  the  conclusion 
of  this  letter,  seems  to  have  been  held  A.D.  347  ;  two 
years  after  the  Arian  creed,  called  Macros' ic'i,  was 
sent  into  the  West,  and  shortly  after  the  declaration 
of  Constans  in  favour  of  the  restoration  of  the  Atha- 



5*HE  events  recorded  in  the  last  Section  were  attended 
by  important  consequences  in  the  history  of  Arianisni. 
The  Council  of  Sardica  led  to  a  separation  between 
the  Eastern  and  Western  Churches  ;  which  seemed  to 
be  there  represented  respectively  by  the  rival  Synods 
of  Sardica  and  Philippopolis,  and  which  had  before 
this  time  hidden  their  differences  from  each  other,  and 
communicated  together  from  a  fear  of  increasing  the 
existing  evil'.  Not  that  really  there  was  any  dis- 
cordance of  doctrine  between  them.  The  historian, 
from  whom  this  statement  is  taken,  gives  it  at  the 
same  time  as  his  own  opinion,  that  the  majority  of  the 
Asiatics  were  Homousians,  though  tyrannized  over 
by  the  court  influence,  the  sophistry,  the  importunity, 
and  the  daring,  of  the  Eusebian  party.  This  mcie 
handful  of  divines,  unscrupulously  pressing  forward 
into  the  highest  ecclesiastical  stations,  set  about  them 
to  change  the  condition  of  the  Churches  thus  put  into 
their  power  ;  and,  as  has  been  remarked  in  the  case  of 
■Leontius  of  Antioch,  filled  the  inferior  offices  with 


'  Soz,  Hi.  13. 

294  '^^^  Semi- Avians,  [chap.  iv. 

their  own  creatures,  and  sowed  the  seeds  of  future 
discords  and  disorders,  which  they  could  not  hope 
to  have  themselves  the  satisfaction  of  beholding.  The 
orthodox  majority  of  Bishops  and  divines,  on  the 
other  hand,  timorously  or  indolently,  kept  in  the 
background  ;  and  allowed  themselves  to  be  repre- 
sented at  Sardica  by  men,  whose  tenets  they  knew  to 
be  unchristian,  and  professed  to  abominate.  And  in 
such  circumstances,  the  blame  of  the  open  dissensions, 
which  ensued  between  the  Eastern  and  Western 
divisions  of  Christendom,  was  certain  to  be  attributed 
to  those  who  urged  the  summoning  of  the  Council, 
not  to  those  who  neglected  their  duty  by  staying 
away.  In  qualification  of  this  censure,  however,  the 
intriguing  spirit  of  the  Eusebians  must  be  borne 
in  mind  ;  who  might  have  means,  of  which  we  are 
not  told,  of  keeping  away  their  orthodox  brethren  from 
Sardica.  Certainly  the  expense  of  the  journey  was 
considerable,  whatever  might  be  the  imperial  or  the 
ecclesiastical  allowances  for  it  2,   and  their  absence 

2  [On  the  cursits  piihlicuSf  vid.  Gothofred.  in  Cod.  Theod.  viii.  tit.  5, 
It  was  provided  for  the  journeys  of  the  Emperor,  for  persons  whom  he 
summoned,  for  magistrates,  ambassadors,  and  for  such  private  persons 
as  the  Emperor  indulged  in  the  use  of  it,  which  was  gratis.  The  use 
was  granted  by  Constantine  to  the  Bishops  who  were  summoned  to 
Nica?a,  as  far  as  it  went,  in  addition  to  other  means  of  travelling.  Euseb. 
v.  Const,  iii.  6.  (though  aliter  Valesius  in  loc.)  The  cursits  puhiicus 
brought  the  Bishops  to  the  Council  of  Tyre.  Ibid.  iv.  43.  In  the  con- 
ference between  Liberius  and  Constantius  (Thcod.  Hist.  ii.  13),  it  is 
objected  that  the  cursus  puhlicvs  is  not  sufficient  to  convey  Bishops  to  the 
Council,  as  Liberius  proposes ;  he  answers  that  the  Churches  are  rich 
enough  to  convey  their  Bishops  as  far  as  the  seas.  Thus  St.  Hilary  was 
compelled  (dattl  evectionis  copi&,  Sulp.  Sev.  Hist.  ii.  57)  to  attend  at 
Seleucia,  as  Athanasius  at  Tyre.  Julian  complains  of  the  abuse  of  the 
cursus  piillicuSf  perhaps  with  an  allusion  to  these  Councils  of  Constantius. 
Vide  Cod,  Theod.  viii.  tit.  5, 1.  12;  where  Gothofred  quotes  Liban.  Epitaph. 

from  their  flocks,  especially  in  an  ngc  fertile  in  Coun- 
cils, was  an  evil.  Still  tlierc  is  enough  in  the  histoiy 
of  the  times,  to  evidence  a  culpable  negligence  on  the 
part  of  the  orthodox  of  Asia. 

However,  this  rupture  between  the  East  and  West 
has  here  been  noticed,  not  to  censure  the  Asiatic 
Churches,  but  for  the  sake  of  its  influence  on  the 
fortunes  of  Arianism.  It  had  the  eff'ect  of  pushing 
fonvard  the  Semi-Arians,  as  they  arc  called,  into  a 
party  distinct  from  the  Eusebian  or  Court  party, 
among  whom  they  had  hitherto  been  concealed. 
This  party,  as  its  name  implies,  professed  a  doctrine 
approximating  to  the  orthodox  ;  and  thus  served  as  a 
means  of  deceiving  the  Western  Churches,  which  were, 
tmskilled  in  the  evasions,  by  which  the  Eusebians 
extricated  themselves  from  even  the  most  explicit 
confessions  of  the  Catholic  doctrine.  Accordingly, 
the  six  heretical  confessions  hitherto  recounted  were 
all  Semi-Arian  in  character,  as  being  intended  more 
Dfless  to  justify  the  heretical  party  in  the  eyes  of  the 

itins.     But  when  this  object  ceased  to  be  feasible, 

ia  Julian,  (vol.  i.  p.  569,  ed.  Reiskc).  Vktc  the  well-knovin  passage  of 
Ammianus,  who  speaks  of  (he  Councils  as  being  the  ruin  of  the  res  vehi. 
cularia.  Hist.  XXi.  16.  The  Eusebians  at  Philippopolis  say  the  aams, 
Itilat.  Fragra.  iii.  IJ.  The  Emperor  provided  board  and  perhaps  lodg'- 
■ng  tifr  ihe  Bishops  at  Ariminum ;  which  the  Bishops  of  Aquitaine,Gaul, 
atid  Biitain  declined,  eicepl  three  British  ftom  povetl)'.  Sulp.Hist.  ii.s6. 
Hanineric  in  Africa,  after  assEmblIng  465  Bishops  at  Carthage,  dismisseit 
them  without  mode  of  conveyance,  provision,  or  baggage.  Victor.  Utic. 
IliST,  iii.  init.  In  the  Empetur's  ktler  previous  to  the  assembling  of  the 
sixth  Ecumenical  Conncil,  a.d.  67H  (Harduin.  Cone.  t.  3,  p.  1043,  liQ.)> 
he  Hays  he  has  given  orJers  for  the  conveyance  and  maintenance  of  its 
mtmbets.  Pope  JBhn  VUI.  reminds  Ursus,  Duke  of  Venice  (*.n.  876),  of 
ihesime  duty  of  providing  for  the  members  of  a  Council,  "secundum 
pios  principes,  qui  in  talibus  munificil  semper  eiaiit  intenti."  Colet. 
Coiidl.  n/en,  1730)  t.  li,  p.  14,] 

296  The  Semi-Arians  [chap.  iv. 

by  the  event  of  the  Sardican  Council,  the  Semi-Arians 
ceased  to  be  of  service  to  the  Eusebians,  and  a  separ- 
ation between  the  parties  gradually  took  place. 


I'he  Semi-Arians,  whose  history  shall  here  be 
introduced,  originated,  as  far  as  their  doctrine  is  con- 
cerned, in  the  change  of  profession  which  the  Nicene 
anathema  was  the  occasion  of  imposing  upon  the 
Eusebians  ;  and  had  for  their  founders  Eusebius  of 
Caesarea,  and  the  Sophist  Asterius.  But  viewed  as  a 
party,  they  are  of  a  later  date  3.  The  genuine  Euse- 
bians were  never  in  earnest  in  the  modified  creeds, 
which  they  so  ostentatiously  put  forward  for  the  appro- 
bation of  the  West.  However,  while  they  clamoured  in 
defence  of  the  inconsistent  doctrine  contained  in  them, 
which,  resembling  the  orthodox  in  word,  might  in  fact 
subvert  it,  and  at  once  confessed  and  denied  our  Lord, 
it  so  happened,  that  they  actually  recommended  that 
doctrine  to  the  judgment  of  some  of  their  followers, 
and  succeeded  in  creating  a  direct  belief  in  an  hypo- 
thesis, which  in  their  own  case  was  but  the  cloke  for  their 
own  indifference  to  the  truth.  This  at  least  seems  the 
true  explanation  of  an  intricate  subject  in  the  history. 
There  are  always  men  of  sensitive  and  subtle  minds, 
the  natural  victims  of  the  bold  disputant ;  men,  who, 
unable  to  take  a  broad  and  common-sense  view  of  an 
important  subject,  try  to  satisfy  their  intellect  and 
conscience  by  refined  distinctions  and  perverse  reser- 
vations. Men  of  this  stamp  were  especially  to  be 
found  among  a  people  possessed  of  the  language  and 

»  [Vide  Ath.  Tr.  vol.  ii.  pp.  282—286  ] 

SKCT.  n.]  The  Semi-Arians. 

aciileness  of  the  Greeks,  Accordingly,  the  Euscbians 
at  length  perceived,  doubtless  to  their  surprise  and 
disgust,  that  a  party  had  arisen  from  among  them- 
selves, with  all  the  positivcness  (as  they  would  consider 
it),  and  nothing  of  the  straightforward  simplicity  of  the 
Catholic  controversialists,  more  willing  to  dogmatize 
than  to  argue,  and  binding  down  their  associates  to  the 
real  import  of  the  words,  which  they  had  themselves 
chosen  as  mere  evasions  of  orthodoxy ;  and  to  their 
dismay  they  discovered,  that  in  this  party  the  new 
Emperor  himself  was  to  be  numbered.  Constantiug, 
indeed,  may  be  taken  as  a  type  of  a  genuine  Semi- 
Arian  ;  resisting,  as  he  did,  the  orthodox  doctrine  from 
over-subtlety,  timidity,  pride,  restlessness,  or  other 
weakness  of  mind,  yet  paradoxical  enough  to  combat 
at  the  same  time  and  condemn  all,  who  ventured  to 
teach  anything  short  of  that  orthodoxy.  Balanced 
on  this  imperceptible  centre  between  truth  and  error, 
he  alternately  banished  every  party  in  the  controversy, 
not  even  sparing  his  own ;  and  had  recourse  in  turn 
to  every  creed  for  relief,  except  that  in  which  the 
truth  was  actually  to  be  found. 

The  symbol  of  the  Semi-Arians  was  the //"owzflrtfj/OT/, 
"like  in  substance,"  which  they  substituted  for  the 
orthodox  HomoHsion,  "one  in  substance"  or  " consub- 
stantiair  Their  objections  to  the  latter  formula  took 
the  following  form.  If  the  word  nsia,  "substance" 
denoted  the  "first  substance,"  or  an  individual  being, 
then  HoiHoiisios  seemed  to  bear  a  Sabellian  meaning, 
and  to  involve  a  denial  of  the  separate  personality  of 
the  Son  ^.  On  the  otlicr  hand,  if  the  word  was  under- 
stood as  including  two  distinct  Persons  (or  Hypostases), 
*  Ejiipb.  Hier.  luiii.  ii.  (in. 

298  The  Semi'Arians.  [chap.  iv. 

this  was  to  use  it,  as  it  is  used  of  created  things  ;  as  if 
by  substance  were  meant  some  common  nature,  either 
divided  in  fact,  or  one  merely  by  abstraction  5.  They 
were  strengthened  in  this  view  by  the  decree  of  the 
Council,  held  at  Antioch  between  the  years  260  and 
270,  in  condemnation  of  Paulus,  in  which  the  word 
Homousio7i  was  proscribed.  They  preferred,  accord- 
ingly, to  name  the  Son  ''like  in  sub  stance  ^^^  or  Homoe-^ 
iisioSy  with  the  Father,  that  is,  of  a  substance  like  in 
all  things,  except  in  not  being  the  Father's  substance; 
maintaining  at  the  same  time,  that,  though  the  Son 
and  Spirit  were  separate  in  substance  from  the  Father, 
still  they  were  so  included  in  His  glory  that  there  was 
but  one  God. 

Instead  of  admitting  the  evasion  of  the  Arians,  that 
the  word  Son  had  but  a  secondary  sense,  and  that  our 
Lord  was  in  reality  a  creature,  though  "  not  Kke  other 
creatures,"  they  plainly  declared  that  He  was  not  a 
creature,  but  truly  the  Son,  born  of  the  substance 
(nsia)  of  the  Father,  as  if  an  Emanation  from  Him  at 
His  will  ;  yet  they  would  not  allow  Him  simply  to  be 
God,  as  the  Father  was  ;  but,  asserting  that  there  were 
various  energies  in  the  Divine  Being,  they  considered 
creation  to  be  one,  and  the  gennesis  or  generation  to  be 
another,  so  that  the  Son,  though  distinct  in  substance 
from  God,  was  at  the  same  time  essentially  distinct 
from  every  created  nature.  Or  they  suggested  that 
He  was  the  offspring  of  the  Person  (hypostasis)^  not  of 
the  substafice  or  nsia  of  the  Father ;  or,  so  to  say,  of 
the  Divine  Will,  as  if  the  force  of  the  word  ''Son  " 
consisted  in  this  point.     Further,  instead  of  the  "ofice 

•  Soz.  iii.  18. 

ofioios  KttT*  ovvCav* 

SECT.  It.] 

H£  was  not,"  they  adopted  the  "generated tiirm^art" 
for  which  even  Arius  had  changed  it.  That  is,  as 
holding  that  the  question  of  tlie  beginning  of  the  Son's 
existence  was  beyond  our  comprehension,  tliey  only 
asserted  that  there  was  such  a  beginning,  but  that  it 
was  before  time  and  independent  of  it ;  as  if  it  were 
possible  to  draw  a  distinction  between  the  Catholic 
doctrine  of  the  derivation  or  ordet  of;3uccession  in  the 
Holy  Trinity  (the  "  mtorigitiately  generated")  and  tliis 
notion  of  a  beginning  simplified  of  the  condition  of 

Such  was  the  Scmi-Arian  Creed,  really  involving 
contradictions  in  terms,  parallel  to  those  of  which  the 
orthodox  were  accused  ; — that  the  Son  was  born 
before  all  times,  yet  not  eternal ;  not  a  creature,  yet 
not  God ;  of  His  substance,  yet  not  the  same  in 
substance  ;  and  His  exact  and  perfect  resemblance  in 
all  things,  yet  not  a  second  Deity. 

Yet  the  men  were  better  than  their  creed  ;  and  it  is 
satisfactory  to  be  ablf  to  detect  amid  the  impiety  and 
ivorldliness  of  the  heretical  party  any  elements  of  a 
purer  spirit,  which  gradually  exerted  itself  and  worhtd 
out  from  the  corrupt  mass,  in  which  it  was  embedded. 
Even  thus  viewed  as  distinct  from  their  political  asso- 
ciates, the  Semi-Arians  are  a  motley  party  at  best ; 
yet  they  may  be  considered  as  Saints  and  Martyrs, 
when  compared  with  the  Euscbiani,  and  in  fact  some 
of  them  have  actually  been  acknowledged  as  such  by 
the  Catholics  of  subsequent  times.  Their  zeal  in 
detecting  the  humanitarianism  of  Marccllus  and  Pho- 
tinus,   and    thfir   good  service    in   withstanding  the 

300  The  Semi' Avians.  [chap.  iv. 

Anomoeans,  who  arrived  at  the  same  humanitarianism 
by  a  bolder  course  of  thought,  will  presently  be 
mentioned.  On  the  whole  they  were  men  of  correct 
and  exemplary  life,  and  earnest  according  to  their 
views ;  and  they  even  made  pretensions  to  sanctity 
in  their  outward  deportment,  in  which  they  differed 
from  the  true  Eusebians,  whOj^as  far  as  the  times 
allowed  it,  affegted  the  manners  an3"  principles  of  the 
[wojld.  It  may  be  added,  that  both  Athanasius  and 
Hilary,  two  of  the  most  uncompromising  supporters 
of  the  Catholic  doctrine,  speak  favourably  of  them. 
Athanasius  does  not  hesitate  to  call  them  brothers  7  ; 
considering  that,  however  necessary  it  was  for  the 
edification  of  the  Church  at  large,  that  the  Homoiision 
should  be  enforced  on  the  clergy,  yet  that  the  privi- 
leges of  private  Christian  fellowship  were  not  to  be 
denied  to  those,  who  from  one  cause  or  other  stumbled 
at  the  use  of  it  8.  It  is  remarkable,  that  the  Semi- 
Arians,  on  the  contrary,  in  their  most  celebrated 
Synod  (at  Ancyra,  A.D.  358)  anathematized  the 
holders  of  the  Homoiision,  as  if  crypto-Sabellians  9 

Basil,  the  successor  of  Marcellus,  in  the  see  cf 
Ancyra,  united  in  his  person  the  most  varied  learning 
with  the  most  blameless  life,  of  all  the  Semi-Arians  '. 
This  praise  of  rectitude  in  conduct  was  shared  with 
him  by  Eustathius  of  Sebaste,  and  Eleusius  of  Cyzicus. 
These  three  Bishops  especially  attracted  the  regard  of 
Hilary,  on  his  banishment  to  Phrygia  by  the  intrigues 
of  the  Arians  (a.d.  356).     The  zealous  confessor  feel- 

'  [However,  he  is  severe  upon  Eustathius  and  Basil  (ad  Ep.  iE^.  y.), 
as  St.  Basil  is  on  the  former,  who  had  been  his  friend.] 

®  Athan.  de  Syn.  41.  •  Epiph.  supra. 

1  Theod.  Hist.  ii.  25. 

ingly  laments  the  condition,  in  which  he  found  the 
Churches  in  those  parts.  "  I  do  not  speak  of  things 
strange  to  me  :  "  lie  says,  "  I  write  not  without  know- 
ledge; I  have  heard  and  seeji  in  my  own  person  the 
faults,  not  of  laics  merely,  but  of  bishops.  For, 
excepting  Eleusius  and  a  few  with  him,  the  ten  pro- 
vinces of  Asia,  in  which  I  am,  are  for  the  most  part 
truly  ignorant  of  God  2."  His  testimony  in  favour  of 
the  Semi-Arians  of  Asia  Minor,  must  in  fairness  be 
considered  as  delivered  with  the  same  force  of  asser- 
tion, which  marks  his  protest  against  all  but  them ; 
and  he  elsewhere  addresses  Basil,  Eustathius,  and 
Eleusius,  by  the  title  of  "  Sanctissimi  viri  V 

Mark,  Bishop  of  Arcthusa,  in  Syria,  has  obtained 
from  the  Greek  Church  tiie  honours  of  a  Saint  and 
Martyr.  He  indulged,  indeed,  a  violence  of  spirit, 
which  assimilates  him  to  llie  pure  Arians,  who  were 
the  first  among  Christians  to  employ  force  in  the  cause 
ofreligion.  But  violence,  which  endures  as  freely  as  it 
assails,  obtains  our  respect,  if  it  is  denied  our  praise. 
His  exertions  in  the  cause  of  Christianity  were 
attended  with  considerable  success.  In  the  reign  of 
Constantius,  availing  himself  of  his  power  as  a  Chris- 
tian Bishop,  he  demolished  a  heathen  temple,  and 
built  a  church  on  its  site.  When  Julian  succeeded,  it 
was  Mark's  turn  to  suffer.  The  Emperor  had  been 
saved  by  him,  when  a  child,  on  the  massacre  of  the 
other  princes  of  his  house  ;  but  on  this  occasion  he 
considered  that  the  claims  at  once  of  justice  and  of 
paganism    outweighed    the    recollection    of   ancient 

Hilar,  dc  Sjti.  63, 

Ibad.  90.    ViA.  also  the  Life  of  St.  Basil  of  CicEjarca,  who  mai  inti- 
tot  a  lime  nith  Eustathius  and  Dlbcis, 

302  The  Semi'Arians.         [chap.  iv. 

services.  Mark  was  condemned  to  rebuild  the  temple, 
or  to  pay  the  price  of  it ;  and,  on  his  flight  from  his 
bishoprick,  many  of  his  flock  were  arrested  as  his 
hostages.  Upon  this,  he  surrendered  himself  to  his 
persecutors,  who  immediately  subjected  him  to  the 
most  revolting,  as  well  as  the  most  cruel  indignities. 
"  They  apprehended  the  aged  prelate,"  says  Gibbon, 
selecting  some  out  of  the  number,  "  they  inhumanly 
scourged  him  ;  they  tore  his  beard  ;  and  his  naked 
body,  anointed  with  honey,  was  suspended,  in  a  net, 
between  heaven  and  earth,  and  exposed  to  the  stings 
of  insects  and  the  rays  of  a  Syrian  sun^."  The  pay- 
ment of  one  piece  of  gold  towards  the  rebuilding  of 
the  temple,  would  have  rescued  him  from  these 
torments  ;  but,  resolute  in  his  refusal  to  contribute  to 
the  service  of  idolatry,  he  allowed  himself,  with  a 
generous  insensibility,  even  to  jest  at  his  own  suffer- 
ings 5,  till  he  wore  out  the  fury,  or  even,  it  is  said, 
effected  the  conversion  of  his  persecutors.  Gregory 
Nazianzen,  and  Theodoret,  besides  celebrating  his 
activity  in  making  converts,  make  mention  of  his 
wisdom  and  piety,  his  cultivated  understanding,  his 
love  of  virtue,  and  the  honourable  consistency  of  his 
life  6 

Cyril  of  Jerusalem,  and  Eusebius  of  Samosata,  are 
both  Saints  in  the  Roman  Calendar,  though  connected 
in  history  with  the  Semi-Arian  party.  Eusebius  was 
the  friend  of  St.  Basil,  surnamed  the  Great ;  and 
Cyril  is  still  known  to  us  in  his  perspicuous  and 
eloquent  discourses  addressed  to  the  Catechumens. 

Others  might  be  named  of  a  like  respectability, 
though  deficient,  with  those  above-mentioned,  either 

*  Gibbon,  Hist.  ch.  xxiii.  *  Soz.  v.  lo, 

•  Tillem.  Mem.  vol.  vii.  p.  54a, 

SECT,  n.j  The  Semi'ArhiHs. 

in  moral  or  in  mtcllectiial  Judgment  With  these 
were  mingled  a  few  of  a  darker  character.  George  of 
LaoJicea,  one  of  the  genuine  Eusebians,  joined  them 
for  a  time,  and  took  a  chief  share  together  with  Basil 
in  the  management  of  the  Council  of  Ancyra.  Macc- 
doiiius,  who  was  originally  an  Anomcean,  passed 
through  Semi-Arianism  to  the  heresy  of  the  Pneuma- 
tomachists.  that  is,  the  denial  of  the  Divinity  of  the 
Holy  Ghost,  of  which  he  is  theologically  the  founder. 

The  Semi-Arians,  being  such  as  above  described, 
were  at  fii"st  both  in  faith  and  conduct  an  ornament 
and  recommendation  of  the  Eusebians.  But,  when 
once  the  latter  stood  at  variance  with  the  Latin 
Church  by  the  event  of  the  Sardican  Council,  they 
C  .'ased  to  be  of  sewice  to  them  as  a  blind,  which  was 
no  longer  available,  or  rather  were  an  incumbrance  to 
them,  and  formidable  rivals  in  the  favour  of  Constan- 
tius.  The  separation  between  the  two  parties  was 
probably  retarded  for  a  while  by  the  forced  submission 
and  recantation  of  the  Eusebian  Valens  and  Ursacius ; 
but  an  event  soon  happened,  which  altogether  released 
lliose  two  Bishops  and  the  rest  of  the  Eusebians  from 
the  embarrassments,  in  which  the  influence  of  the 
West  and  the  timidity  of  Constantius  had  for  the 
moment  involved  them.  This  was  the  assassination 
of  the  Catholic  Constans  which  took  place  A.D.  350 ; 
in  consequence  of  which  (Constantine,  the  eldest  of 
the  brothers,  being  already  dead)  Constantius  suc- 
ceeded to  the  undivided  empire.  Thus  the  Eusebians 
had  the  whole  of  the  West  opened  to  their  ambition?; 

'  [The  Emcbiana,  ot  (lolitical  parly,  were  renewed  in  the  Acacians, 
iinmeiliately  \u  be  nieiilii>ncd,  Athanasius  calliiig  the  lallci  tlie  heiis  nf 

304  The  Semi'Arians.  [chap*  iv. 

and  were  bound  by  no  impediment,  except  such  as 
the  ill-instructed  Semi-Arianism  of  the  Emperor 
might  impose  iipon  them.  Their  proceedings  under 
these  fortunate  circumstances  will  come  before  us 
presently ;  here  I  will  confine  myself  to  the  mention 
of  the  artifice,  by  which  they  succeeded  in  recom- 
mending themselves  to  Constantius,  while  they  op- 
posed and  triumphed  over  the  Semi-Arian  Creed. 

This  artifice,  which,  obvious  as  it  is,  is  curious,  from 
the  place  which  it  holds  in  the  history  of  Arianism, 
was  that  of  affecting  on  principle  to  limit  confessions 
of  faith  to  Scripture  terms  ;  and  was  adopted  by 
Acacius,  Bishop  of  Caesarea,  in  Palestine,  the  successor 
of  the  learned  Eusebius,  one  of  the  very  men,  who  had 
advocated  the  Semi-Arian  non-scriptural  formularies 
of  the  Dedication  and  of  Philippopolis  8.  From  the 
earliest  date,  the  Arians  had  taken  refuge  from  the 
difficulties  of  their  own  unscriptural  dogmas  in  the 
letter  of  the  sacred  writers;  but  they  had  scarcely 
ventured  on  the  inconsistency  of  objecting  to  the 
terms  of  theology,  as  such.  But  here  Eusebius  of 
Caesarea  anticipated  the  proceedings  of  his  party  ; 
and,  as  he  opened  upon  his  contemporaries  the 
evasion  of  Semi-Arianism,  so  did  he  also  anticipate 
his  pupil  Acacius  in  the  more  specious  artifice  now 
under  consideration.  It  is  suggested  in  the  apology 
whicli  he  put  forth  for  signing  the  Nicene  anathema 
of  the  Arian  formulae  ;  which  anathema  he  defends  on 
the  principle,  that  these  formulae  were  not  conceived 

the  former,  Hist.  Arian.  §§19  and  28 ;  vid.  also  Ath.  Tr.  vol.  ii.  p.  28.) 
He  ever  distinguishes  the  Arians  proper  from  the  Eusebians  (in  his 
Ep.  Enc.  and  Apol.  Contr.  Arian.),  as  afterwards  the  Anomoeans  were 
to  be  dbtinguished  from  the  Acacians.] 
»  Athan.  dc  Syn.  36 — 38. 

SECT,  n.]  The  Semi-Arians. 

in  the  language  of  Scripture  5.  Allusion  is  made  to 
the  same  principle  from  time  to  time  in  the  subse- 
quent Arian  Councils,  as  if  even  then  the  laxer  Euse- 
bians  were  struggling  against  the  dogmatism  of  the 
Semi-Arians.  Though  the  Creed  of  Lucian  intro- 
duces the  "iisia,"the  three  other  Creeds  of  the  Dedi- 
cation omit  it ;  and  this  hypothesis  of  differences  of 
opinion  in  the  heretical  body  at  tliese  Councils  partly 
accounts  for  that  hesitation  and  ambiguity  in  declaring 
their  faith,  which  has  been  noticed  in  its  place.  Again, 
the  Macrostich  omits  the  "usia,"  professes  generally 
that  the  Son  is  "like  in  all  things  to  iJie  Father"  and 
enforces  the  propriety  of  keeping  to  the  language  of 

About  the  time  which  is  at  present  more  particu- 
larly before  us,  that  is,  after  the  death  of  Constans, 
this  modification  of  Arianism  becomes  distinct,  and 
collects  around  it  the  Eastern  Eusebians,  under  the 
skilful  management  of  Acacius.  It  is  not  easy  to 
fix  the  date  of  his  openly  adopting  it ;  the  immediate 
cause  of  which  was  his  quarrel  with  the  Semi-Arian 
Cyril,  which  lies  between  A,n.  349 — 357.  The  distin- 
guishing principle  of  his  new  doctrine  was  adherence 
to  the  Scripture  phraseology,  in  opposition  to  the 
inconvenient  precision  of  the  Semi-Arians  ;  its  distin- 
fjuishing  tenet  is  the  vague  confession  that  the  Son  is 
generally  "  like^'  or  at  most  "  in  all  things  like  "  tlie 
Father, — "like"  as  opposed  to  the  "one  in  substance," 

»-  Virt.  also  Theod.  Hisi.  \\.  3.  [who  (ells  us  that  ihe  objection  of  "un- 
wripluralncss''  had  been  suggested  to  Constantius  by  the  Atian  priest, 
fhe  favourite  of  Constantia,  to  whom  Consiantine  had  enirusted  his  will. 
Eusebius,  in  his  Lettei  about  the  Nicene  Creed,  does  scarcely  mnre  than 
i;la.nce  at  this  ubjectiun.] 

'  Vid,  Alhan.  dc  Synod. 

3o6  The  Semi-Arians.  [chap.  iv. 

"  like  in  substance^'  and  "  imlike^,'^ — ^that  is,  the  vague 
confession  that  the  Son  is  generally  like,  or  altogetlier 
likey  the  Father.  Of  these  two  expressions,  the  ^^ in  all 
things  like''  was  allowed  by  the  Semi-Arians,  who  in- 
cluded "  in  substance  "  under  it ;  whereas  the  Acacians 
(for  so  they  may  now  be  called),  or  Homoeans  (as 
holding  the  Homceon  or  like)y  covertly  intended  to  ex- 
clude the  ''in  siibstance''  by  that  very  expression,  mere 
similarity  always  implying  difference,  and  ''substance'* 
being,  as  they  would  argue,  necessarily  excluded  from 
the  "  in  all  things^'  if  the  "  like "  were  intended  to 
stand  for  any  thing  short  of  identity.  It  is  plain  then 
that,  in  the  meaning  of  its  authors,  and  in  the  prac- 
tical effect  of  it,  this  new  hypothesis  was  neither  more 
nor  less  than  the  pure  Arian,  or,  as  it  was  afterwards 
called,  Anomoean,  though  the  phrase,  in  which  it 
was  conveyed,  bore  in  its  letter  the  reverse  sense. 

Such  was  the  state  of  the  heresy  about  the  year  350  ; 
before  reviewing  its  history,  as  carried  on  between  the 
two  rival  parties  into  which  its  advocates,  the  Euse- 
bians,  were  dividing,  the  Semi-Arian  and  Homoean,  I 
shall  turn  to  the  sufferings  of  the  Catholic  Church  at 
that  period. 

2  ofiOLOV  or  Kara  Trayra  ofiOLOV  is  the  tenet  of  the  Acacians  or  Ho- 
moeans, as  opposed  to  Catholic  ofioovariov,  the  Semi-Arian  ofJLOLOvo'ioVy 
and  the  avofiotov  of  the  Eunomians  or  Aetians.  [St.  Cyril,  however^ 
adopts  the  Kara  irdvTa  o/xotov,  as  does  DamascencJ 


Tf[E  second  Arian  Persecution  is  spread  over  the 
space  of  about  twelve  years,  being  the  interval 
between  the  death  of  Constans,  and  that  of  Constan- 
tius  (A.D.  350 — 361).  Various  local  violences,  particu- 
larly at  Alexandria  and  Constantinople,  had  occurred 
with  the  countenance  of  the  Eusebians  at  an  earlier 
date  ;  but  they  were  rather  acts  of  revenge,  than 
intended  as  means  of  bringing  over  the  Catholics,  and 
were  conducted  on  no  plan.  The  chief  sees,  too, 
had  been  seized,  and  their  occupants  banished.  But 
now  the  alternative  of  subscription  or  sutTering  was 
ycncraily  introduced  ;  and,  though  Arianism  was 
more  sanguinary  in  its  later  persecutions,  it  could  not 
be  more  audacious  and  abandoned  than  it  showed 
itself  in  this. 

The  artifice  of  the  Homceon.  of  which  Acacius  had 
undertaken  the  management,  was  adapted  to  promote 
the  success  of  his  party,  among  the  orthodox  of  the 
West,  as  well  as  to  delude  or  embarrass  the  Oriental 
Scmi-Arians,  for  whom  it  was  particularly  provided. 
The  Latin  Churches,  who  had  not  been  exposed  to 
those  trials  of  heretical  subtlety  of  which  the  Homo- 

3o8  The  Aihanasiafis.  [chap.  iv. 

tision  was  reluctantly  made  the  remedy,  had  adhered 
with  a  noble  simplicity  to  the  decision  of  Nicaea;  being 
satisfied  (as  it  would  seem),  that,  whether  or  not  they 
had  need  of  the  test  of  orthodoxy  at  present,  in  it  lay 
the  security  of  the  great  doctrine  in  debate,  whenever 
the  need  should  come.  At  the  same  time,  they  were 
naturally  jealous  of  the  introduction  of  such  terms 
into  their  theology,  as  chiefly  served  to  remind  them 
of  the  dissensions  of  foreigners  ;  and,  as  influenced  by 
this  feeling,  even  after  their  leaders  had  declared 
against  the  Eusebians  at  Sardica,  they  were  exposed 
to  the  temptation  of  listening  favourably  to  the  artifice 
of  the  ^^Homceon  "  or  "  like^  To  shut  up  the  subject 
in  Scripture  terms,  and  to  say  that  our  Lord  was  like 
His  Father,  no  explanation  being  added,  seemed  to  be 
a  peaceful  doctrine,  and  certainly  was  in  itself  unex- 
ceptionable ;  and,  of  course  would  wear  a  still  more 
favourable  aspect,  when  contrasted  with  the  threat  of 
exile  and  poverty,  by  which  its  acceptance  was 
enforced.  On  the  other  hand,  the  proposed  measure 
veiled  the  grossness  of  that  threat  itself,  and  fixed  the 
attention  of  the  solicited  Churches  rather  upon  the 
argument,  than  upon  the  Imperial  command.  Minds 
that  are  proof  against  the  mere  menaces  of  power, 
are  overcome  by  the  artifices  of  an  importunate 
casuistry.  Those,  who  would  rather  have  suflTered 
death  than  have  sanctioned  the  impieties  of  Arius, 
hardly  saw  how  to  defend  themselves  in  refusing 
creeds,  which  were  abstractedly  true,  though  incom- 
plete, and  intolerable  only  because  the  badges  of  a 
prevaricating  party.  Thus  Arianism  gained  its  first 
footing  in  the  West.  And,  when  one  concession  was 
made,  another  was  demanded ;  or,  at  other  time?^  thq 

SECT,  ni.]  The  Athanasians.  309 

first  concession  was  converted,  not  witliout  specious- 
ness,  into  a  principle,  as  allowing  change  altogether  in 
theological  language,  as  if  to  depart  from  the  Homo- 
iislon  were  in  fact  to  acquiesce  in  the  open  impieties 
of  Arius  and  the  Anomceans.  This  is  the  character 
of  the  history  as  more  or  less  illustrated  in  this  and 
the  subsequent  Section  ;  the  Catholics  being  harassed 
by  sophistry  and  persecution,  and  the  Semi-Arians 
first  acquiescing  in  the  Homceon,  then  retracting,  and 
becoming  more  distinct  upon  the  scene,  as  the  Euse- 
bians  or  Acacians  ventured  to  speak  of  our  Lord  in 
less  honourable  terms. 

But  there  was  another  subscription,  required  of  the 
Catholics  during  the  same  period  and  from  an  earlier 
date,  as  painful,  and  to  all  but  the  most  honest  minds 
as  embarrassing,  as  that  to  the  creed  of  the  Homceon ; 
and  that  was  the  condemnation  of  Athanasius.  The 
Eusebians  were  incited  against  him  by  resentment 
and  jealousy  ;  they  perceived  tliat  the  success  of  their 
schemes  was  impossible,  while  a  Bishop  was  on  the 
scene,  so  popular  at  home,  so  respected  abroad,  the 
bond  of  connexion  between  the  orthodox  of  Europe 
and  Asia,  the  organ  of  their  sentiments,  and  the  guide 
and  vigorous  agent  of  their  counsels.  Moreover,  the 
circumstances  of  the  times  had  attached  an  adven- 
titious importance  to  his  fortunes  ;  as  if  the  cause  of 
the  Homoiision  were  providentially  committed  to  his 
custody,  and  in  his  safety  or  overthrow,  the  triumph 
or  loss  of  the  truth  were  actually  involved.  And,  in 
the  eyes  of  the  Emperor,  the  Catholic  champion 
appeared  as  a  rival  of  his  own  sovereignty  ;  type,  as 
lie  really  was,  and  instrument  of  that  Apostolic  Order, 
which,  whether  or  not  united  to  tlie  civil  power,  must. 

3IO  The  Atkanasians,  [chap.  iv. 

to  the  end  of  time,  divide  the  rule  with  Caesar  as  the 
minister  of  God.  Considering  then  Athanasius  too 
great  for  a  subject,  Constantius,  as  if  for  the  peace  of 
his  empire,  desired  his  destruction  at  any  rate^ 
Whether  he  was.  unfortunate  or  culpable  it  mattered 
not ;  whether  implicated  in  legal  guilt,  or  forced  by 
circumstances  into  his  present  position  ;  still  he  was 
the  fit  victim  of  a  sort  of  ecclesiastical  ostracism, 
which,  accordingly,  he  called  upon  the  Church  to 
inflict.  He  demanded  it  of  the  Church,  for  the  very 
eminence  of  Athanasius  rendered  it  unsafe,  even  for 
the  Emperor,  to  approach  him  in  any  other  way.  The 
Patriarch  of  Alexandria  could  not  be  deposed,  except 
after  a  series  of  successes  over  less  powerful  Catholics, 
and  with  the  forced  acquiescence  or  countenance  of 
the  principal  Christian  communities.  And  thus  the 
history  of  the  first  few  years  of  the  persecution, 
presents  to  us  the  curious  spectacle  of  a  party  warfare 
raging  everywhere,  except  in  the  neighbourhood  of 
the  person  who  was  the  real  object  of  it,  and  who  was 
left  for  a  time  to  continue  the  work  of  God  at  Alex- 
andria, unmolested  by  the  Councils,  conferences,  and 
usurpations,  which  perplexed  the  other  capitals  of 

As  regards  the  majority  of  Bishops  who  were  called 
upon  to  condemn  him,  there  was,  it  would  appear, 
little  room  for  error  of  judgment,  if  they  dealt  honestly 
with  their  consciences.  Yet,  in  the  West,  there  were 
those,  doubtless,  who  hardly  knew  enough  of  him  to 
give  him  their  confidence,  or  who  had  no  means  of 
forming  a  true  opinion  of  the  fresh  charges  to  which 
he   was    subjected.      Those,   which    were   originally 

^  Gibbon,  Hist,  ch,  xxi. 

The  Ai/ianasians. 

urged  against  him,  have  already  been  stated  ;  the  new 
allegations  were  as  follows  :  that  he  had  excited 
differences  between  Constantius  and  his  brother ; 
that  he  had  corresponded  with  Magnentius,  the 
usurper  of  the  West ;  that  he  had  dedicated,  or  used, 
a  new  Church  in  Alexandria  without  the  Emperor's 
leave;  and  lastly,  that  he  had  not  obeyed  his  mandate 
summoning  him  to  Italy. — Now  to  review  some  of  the 
prominent  passages  in  the  persecution  : — 

Paul  had  succeeded  Alexander  in  the  See  of  Con- 
stantinople, A.D.  336.  At  the  date  before  us  (A-D,  350), 
he  had  already  been  thrice  driven  from  his  Church  by 
the  intrigues  of  the  Arians  ;  Pontus,  Gaul,  and  Mesopo- 
tamia, being  successively  the  places  of  his  exile.  He 
had  now  been  two  years  restored,  when  he  was  called 
a  fourth  time,  not  merely  to  exile,  but  to  martyrdom. 
By  authority  of  the  Emperor,  he  was  conveyed  from 
Con.stantinople  to  Cucusus  in  Cappadocia,  a  dreary 
town  amid  the  deserts  of  the  Taurus,  afterwards  the 
place  of  banishment  of  his  successor  St.  Chrysostom. 
Here  he  was  left  for  .six  days  without  food  ;  when  his 
conductors  impatiently  anticipated  the  termination  of 
liis  sufferings  by  strangling  him  in  prison,  Macedo- 
nius,  the  Scmi-Arian,  took  possession  of  the  vacant 
see,  and  maintained  his  power  by  the  most  savage 
excesses.  The  confiscation  of  property,  banishment, 
brandings,  torture,  and  death,  were  the  means  of  liis 
accomplishing  in  the  Church  of  Constantinople,  a  con- 
formity with  the  tenets  of  heresy.  The  Novatians,  as 
Kintaining  the  Homoiision,  were  included  in  the 
secution.     On  their  refusing  to  communicate  with 

312  The  A  thanastans.         [chap,  i v. 

him,  they  were  seized  and  scourged,  and  the  sacred 
elements  violently  thrust  into  their  mouths.  Women 
and  children  were  forcibly  baptized  ;  and,  on  the  former 
resisting,  they  were  subjected  to  cruelties  too  miserable 
to  be  described. 


The  sufferings  of  the  Church  of  Hadrianople 
occurred  about  the  same  time,  or  even  earlier.  Under 
the  superintendence  of  a  civil  officer,  who  had  already 
acted  as  the  tool  of  the  Eusebians  in  the  Mareotis, 
several  of  the  clergy  were  beheaded ;  Lucius,  their 
Bishop,  for  the  second  time  loaded  with  chains  and 
sent  into  exile,  where  he  died  ;  and  thiee  other 
Bishops  of  the  neighbourhood  visited  by  nn  Imperial 
edict,  which  banished  them,  at  the  peril  of  their  lives, 
from  all  parts  of  the  Empire. 


Continuing  their  operations  westward,  the  Arians 
next  possessed  themselves  of  the  province  of  Sirmium 
in  Pannonia,  in  which  the  dioceses  of  Valens  and 
Ursacius  were  situated.  These  Bishops,  on  the  death 
of  Constans,  had  relapsed  into  the  heresy  of  his 
brother,  who  was  now  master  of  the  whole  Roman 
world  ;  and  from  that  time  they  may  be  accounted  as 
the  leaders  of  the  Eusebian  party,  especially  in  the 
West.  The  Church  of  Sirmium  was  opened  to  their 
assaults  under  the  following  circumstances.  It  had 
always  been  the  policy  of  the  Arians  to  maintain 
that  the  Homoiision  involved  some  or  other  heresy  by 
necessary  consequence.  A  Valentinian  or  a  Mani- 
chean  materialism   was  sometimes  ascribed  to  the 

SECT,  in.]  The  Athanasians.  3 1 3 

orthodox  doctrine  ;  and  at  another  time,  Sabellianism, 
which  was  especially  hateful  to  the  Scmi-Arians,  And 
it  happened,  moat  unhappily  for  the  Church,  that  one 
of  the  most  strenuous  of  her  champions  at  Nic^ea,  had 
since  fallen  into  a  heresy  of  a  SabeJlian  character; 
and  had  thus  confirmed  the  prejudice  against  the  true 
doctrine,  by  what  might  be  talcen  to  stand  as  an 
instance  of  its  dangerous  tendency.  In  the  course  of 
a  work  in  refutation  of  the  Sophist  Asterius,  one  of 
the  first  professed  Semi-Arians,  Marcellus,  Bishop  of 
Ancyra,  was  led  to  simplify  (as  he  conceived)  the 
creed  of  tlie  Church,  by  statements  which  savoured 
of  Sabellianism  ;  that  is,  he  maintained  tlie  unity  of 
the  Son  with  the  Father,  at  the  expense  of  the  doc- 
trine of  the  personal  distinction  between  the  Two. 
He  was  answered,  not  only  by  Asterius  himself,  but 
by  Eusebius  of  Ca;sarea  and  Acaclus  ;  and,  A.D.  335,  he 
ivas  deposed  from  his  see  by  the  Eusebians,  in  order 
to  make  way  for  the  Scmi-Arian  Basil.  In  spite  of 
the  suspicions  against  him,  the  orthodox  party 
defended  him  for  a  considerable  time,  and  the  Coun- 
cil of  Sardica  (a.d  347)  acquitted  him  and  restored 
liim  to  his  sec  ;  but  at  length,  perhaps  on  account  of 
the  increasing  deliniteness  of  his  heretical  views,  he 
vas  abandoned  by  his  friends  as  hopeless,  even  by 
Athanasius,  who  quietly  put  him  aside  with  the 
acquiescence  of  Marcellus  himself.  But  the  evil  did 
not  end  there ;  his  disciple  Photinus,  Bishop  of  Sir- 
mium,  increased  the  scandal,  by  advocating,  and  with 
greater  boldness,  an  almost  Unitarian  doctrine.  The 
Eusebians  did  not  neglect  the  opportunity  thus  offered 
them,  both  to  calumniate  the  Catholic  teaching,  and 
to  seize  on  so  coa^iderablc  a  see,  which  its  present 

314  The  Atka7tasians.  [chai».  iv. 

occupier  had  disgraced  by  his  heresy.  They  held  a 
Council  at  Sirmium  (A.D.  351),  to  inquire  into  his 
opinions  ;  and  at  his  request  a  formal  disputation  was 
held.  Basil,  the  rival  of  Marcellus,  was  selected  to  be 
the  antagonist  of  his  pupil ;  and  having  the  easier 
position  to  defend,  gained  the  victory  in  the  judgment 
of  impartial  arbiters,  who  had  been  selected.  The 
deposition  of  Photinus  followed,  and  an  Arian,  Ger- 
minius,  placed  in  his  see.  Also  a  new  creed  was 
promulgated  of  a  structure  between  Homoeusian  and 
Homoean,  being  the  first  of  three  which  are  dated 
from  Sirmium.  Germinius  some  years  afterwards 
adopted  a  Semi-Arianism  bordering  upon  the  Catholic 
doctrine,  and  that  at  a  time  when  it  may  be  hoped 
that  secular  views  did  not  influence  his  change, 

The  first  open  attack  upon  Athanasius  and  the 
independence  of  the  West,  was  made  two  years  later 
at  Aries,  at  that  time  the  residence  of  the  Court. 
There  the  Emperor  held  a  Council,  with  the  intention 
of  committing  the  Bishops  of  the  West  to  an  overt  act 
against  the  Alexandrian  prelate.  It  was  attended  by 
the  deputies  of  Liberius,  the  new  Bishop  of  Rome, 
whom  the  Eusebian  party  had  already  addressed, 
hoping  to  find  him  more  tractable  than  his  predecessor 
Julius.  Liberius,  however,  had  been  decided  in  Atha- 
nasius's  favour  by  the  Letter  of  an  Egyptian  Council ; 
and,  in  order  to  evade  the  Emperor's  overtures,  he 
addressed  to  him  a  submissive  message,  petitioning 
him  for  a  general  and  final  Council  at  Aquileia, 
a  measure  which  Constantius  had  already  led  the 
Catholics  to  expect     The  Western  Bishops  at  Aries, 

SECT.  III.]  The  Afhanasians.  315 

on  their  part,  demanded  that,  as  a  previous  step  to 
the  condemnation  of  Athanasius,  the  orthodox  Creed 
should  be  acknowledged  by  the  Council,  and  Arius 
anathematized.  However,  the  Eusebians  carried  their 
point ;  Valcns  followed  up  with  characteristic  violence 
the  imperiousness  of  Constantius ;  ill  treatment  was 
added,  till  the  Fathers  of  the  Council,  worn  out  by 
sufferings,  consented  to  depose  and  even  excom- 
municate Athanasius.  Upon  this,  an  edict  was 
published,  denouncing  punishment  on  all  Bishops 
who  refused  to  subscribe  the  decree  thus  obtained. 
Among  the  instances  of  cowardice,  which  were  ex- 
hibited at  Aries,  none  was  more  lamentable  than  that 
of  Vincent  of  Capua,  one  of  the  deputies  from  Liberius 
to  the  Emperor.  Vincent  had  on  former  occasions 
shown  himself  a  zealous  supporter  of  orthodoxy.  He 
IS  supposed  to  be  the  presbyter  of  the  same  name  who 
was  one  of  the  representatives  of  the  Roman  Bishop 
at  Nicsa  ;  he  had  acted  with  the  orthodox  at  Sardica, 
and  had  afterwards  been  sent  by  Constans  to  Constan- 
tius, to  effect  the  restoration  of  the  Athanasians  in 
jV.D.  348.  It  was  on  this  occasion,  tliat  he  and  his 
companion  had  been  exposed  to  the  malice  of 
Stephen,  the  Arian  Bishop  of  Antioch;  who,  anxious 
to  destroy  their  influence,  caused  a  woman  of  light 
character  to  be  introduced  into  their  chamber,  with 
the  intention  of  founding  a  calumny  against  them  ; 
and  who,  on  the  artifice  being  discovered,  was  deposed 
by  order  of  Constantius.  On  the  present  occasion, 
Vincent  was  entirely  in  the  confidence  of  Liberius  ; 
who,  liaving  entrusted  him  with  his  delicate  commis- 

Kn  from  a  sense  of  his  vigour  and  experience,  was 
»]y  afflicted  at  his  fall.  It  is  satisfactory  to  know, 
L . 

31 6  T/ie  Athanasians^  [chap,  iv, 

that  Vincent  retrieved  himself  afterwards  at  Ari- 
minum ;  where  he  boldly  resisted  the  tyrannical 
attempt  of  the  Eusebians,  to  force  their  creed  on  the 
Western  Church. 

Times  of  trial  bring  forward  men  of  zeal  and  bold- 
ness, who  thus  are  enabled  to  transmit  their  names  to 
posterity.  Liberius,  downcast  at  the  disgrace  of  his 
representative,  and  liable  himself  to  fluctuations  of 
mind,  was  unexpectedly  cheered  by  the  arrival  of  the 
famous  Lucifer,  Bishop  of  Cagliari,  in  Sardinia,  and 
Eusebius  of  Vercellae.  These,  joined  by  a  few  others, 
proceeded  as  his  deputies  and  advocates  to  the  great 
Council  of  Milan,  which  was  held  by  Constantius 
(A.D.  355),  two  years  later  than  that  in  which  Vincent 
fell.  The  Fathers  collected  there  were  in  number 
above  300,  almost  all  of  the  Western  Church.  Con- 
stantius was  present,  and  Valens  conducted  the  Arian 
manoeuvres ;  and  so  secure  of  success  were  he  and  his 
party,  that  they  did  not  scruple  to  insult  the  Council 
with  the  proposal  of  a  pure  Arian,  or  Anomcean, 

Whether  this  creed  was  generally  subscribed,  does 
not  appear  ;  but  the  condemnation  of  Athanasius  was 
universally  agreed  upon,  scarcely  one  or  two  of  the 
whole  number  refusing  to  sign  it.  This  is  remarkable ; 
inasmuch  as,  at  first,  the  Occidentals  demanded  of  the 
Eusebians  an  avowal  of  the  orthodox  faith,  as  the 
condition  of  entering  upon  the  consideration  of  the 
charges  against  him.  But  herein  is  the  strength  of 
audacious  men  ;  who  gain  what  is  unjust,  by  asking 
what  is  extravagant.     So^omen  attributes  the  con- 

SECT.  III.]  The  AthuTiasiam.  317 

cession  of  the  Council  to  fear,  surprise,  and  ignorance'. 
In  truth,  a  collection  of  men,  who  were  strangers  to 
each  other,  and  without  organization  or  recognized 
leaders,  without  definite  objects  or  policy,  was  open  to 
every  variety  of  influence,  which  the  cleverness  of  the 
usurping  faction  might  direct  against  them.  The 
simplicity  of  honesty,  the  weakness  of  an  amiable 
temper,  the  inexperience  of  a  secluded  life,  and  the 
slowness  of  the  unpractised  intellect,  all  combined 
with  their  alarm  at  the  Emperor's  manifested  dis- 
pleasure, to  impel  them  to  take  part  with  his  heresy. 
When  some  of  them  ventured  to  object  the  rule  of  the 
Church  against  his  command,  that  they  should  con- 
demn Athanasius,  and  communicate  with  the  Arians, 
"  My  will  must  ba  its  rule,"  he  replied  ;  "so  the  Syrian 
Bishops  have  decided  ;  and  so  must  yourselves,  would 
you  escape  exile." 

Several  of  the  more  noble-minded  prelates  of  the 
principal  Churches  submitted  to  the  alternative,  and 
left  their  sees.  Dionysius,  Exarch  of  Milan,  was 
banished  to  Cappadocia  or  Armenia,  where  he  died 
before  the  end  of  the  persecution ;  Auxentius  being 
placed  in  his  see,  a  bitter  Arian,  brought  for  the 
purpose  from  Cappadocia,  and  from  his  ignorance  of 
Latin,  singularly  ill-fitted  to  preside  over  a  Western 
province.  Lucifer  was  sent  off  into  Syria,  and  Euse- 
bius  of  Vercella;  into  Palestine.  A  fresh  and  more 
violent  edict  was  published  against  Athanasius ; 
orders  were  given  to  arrest  him  as  an  impious  person, 
ajid  to  put  the  Arians  in  possession  of  his  churches, 
and  of  the  benefactions,  which  Constantine  had  left 
for  ecclesiastical   and   charitable   uses.     Ail  Bishops 

^i    for  t 

3i8  The  Athanasia7is.  [chap.  iv. 

were  prohibited  from  communion  with  him,  under 
pain  of  losing  their  sees ;  and  the  laity  were  to  be 
compelled  by  the  magistrates  to  join  themselves  to 
the  heretical  party.  Hilary  of  Poictiers  was  the  next 
victim  of  the  persecution.  He  had  taken  part  in  a 
petition,  presented  to  Constantius,  in  behalf  -of  the 
exiled  bishops.  In  consequence  a  Gallic  Council  was 
called,  under  the  presidency  of  Saturninus,  Bishop  of 
Aries  ;  and  Hilary  was  banished  into  Phrygia. 


The  history  of  Liberius,  the  occupier  of  the  most 
powerful  see  in  the  West,  possesses  an  interest,  which 
deserves  our  careful  attention.  In  356,  the  year  after 
the  Council  of  Milan,  the  principal  eunuch  of  the  Impe- 
rial Court  had  been  sent,  to  urge  on  him  by  threats 
and  promises  the  condemnation  of  Athanasius  ;  and, 
on  his  insisting  on  a  fair  trial  for  the  accused,  and  a 
disavowal  of  Arianism  on  the  part  of  his  accusers,  as 
preliminary  conditions,  had  caused  him  to  be  forced 
away  to  Milan.  There  the  same  arguments  were 
addressed  to  him  in  the  more  impressive  words  of  the 
Emperor  himself;  who  urged  upon  him  "the  noto- 
riously wicked  life  of  Athanasius,  his  vexatious  oppo- 
sition to  the  peace  of  the  Church,  his  intrigues  to  effect 
a  quarrel  between  the  imperial  brothers,  and  his  fre- 
quent condemnation  in  the  Councils  of  Eastern  and 
Western  Christendom  ;"  and  further  exhorted  him,  as 
being  by  his  pastoral  office  especially  a  man  of  peace, 
to  be  cautious  of  appearing  the  sole  obstacle  to  the 
happy  settlement  of  a  question,  which  could  not 
otherwise  be  arranged.  Liberius  replied  by  demand- 
ing of  Constantius  even  more  than  his  own  deputies 

SECT.  m.J  The  Atkanasians,  319 

had  proposed  to  the  Milanese  Council ; — first,  that 
there  should  be  a  (general  subscription  to  the  Nicene 
faith  throughout  the  Church  ;  next,  that  the  banished 
bishops  should  be  restored  to  their  sees ;  and  lastly, 
should  the  trial  of  Athanasius  be  still  thought  advis- 
able, that  a  Council  should  be  held  at  Alexandria, 
where  justice  might  be  fairly  dealt  between  him  and 
his  accusers.  The  conference  between  them  ended  in 
Liberius  being  allowed  three  days  to  choose  between 
making  the  required  subscription,  and  going  into  exile; 
at  the  end  of  which  time  he  manfully  departed  for 
Bercea,  in  Thrace.  Constantius  and  the  empress, 
struck  with  the  nobleness  of  his  conduct,  sent  after 
him  a  thousand  pieces  of  gold  ;  but  he  refused  a  gift, 
which  must  have  laid  him  under  restraint  towards 
heretical  benefactors.  Much  more  promptly  did  he 
reject  the  offer  of  assistance,  which  Eusebius,  the 
eunuch  be  fore- mentioned,  from  whatever  feeling,  made 
him.  "  You  have  desolated  the  Churches  of  Christen- 
dom," he  said  to  the  powerful  favourite,  "  and  then 
you  offer  me  alms  as  a  convict.  Go,  first  learn  to  be 
a  Christian^," 

There  are  men,  in  whose  mouths  sentiments,  such 
as  these,  are  becoming  and  admirable,  as  being  the 
result  of  Christian  magnanimity,  and  imposed  upon 
them  by  their  station  in  the  Church.  But  the  sequel 
of  the  history  shows,  that  in  the  conduct  of  Liberius 
there  was  more  of  personal  fcehng  and  intemperate 
indignation,  than  of  deep-seated  fortitude  of  soul. 
His  fall,  which  followed,  scandalous  as  it  is  in  itself, 
may  yet  be  taken  to  illustrate  the  silent  firmness  of 
those  others  his  fellow-sufferers,  of  whom  wc  hear  less, 
•  SoE.  iv.  II.    Theud.  Hisi.  11.  16. 

320  The  Atkmtasians.  [chap,  iv, 

because  they  bore  themselves  more  consistently.  Two 
years  of  exile,  among  the  dreaiy  solitudes  of  Thrace, 
broke  his  spirit ;  and  the  triumph  of  his  deacon  Felix, 
who  had  succeeded  to  his  power>  painfully  forced 
upon  his  imagination  his  own  listless  condition,  which 
brought  him  no  work  to  perform,  and  no  witness  of 
his  sufferings  for  the  truth's  sake.  Demophilus,  one  of 
the  foremost  of  the  Eusebian  party,  was  bishop  of 
Beroea,  the  place  of  Liberius's  banishment ;  and  gave 
intelligence  of  his  growing  melancholy  to  his  own 
associates.  Wise  in  their  generation,  they  had  an  in- 
strument ready  prepared  for  the  tempter's  office. 
Fortunatian,  Bishop  of  Aquileia,  who  stood  high  in 
the  opinion  of  Liberius  for  disinterestedness  and 
courage,  had  conformed  to  the  court-religion  in  the 
Arian  Council  of  Milan  ;  and  he  was  now  employed 
by  the  Eusebians,  to  gain  over  the  wavering  prelate. 
The  arguments  of  Fortunatian  and  Demophilus  shall 
be  given  in  the  words  of  Maimbourg.  "  They  told 
him,  that  they  could  not  conceive,  how  a  man  of  his 
worth  and  spirit  could  so  long  obstinately  resolve  to 
be  miserable  upon  a  chimerical  notion,  which  subsisted 
only  in  the  imagination  of  people  of  weak  or  no 
understanding  :  that,  indeed,  if  he  suffered  for  the 
cause  of  God  and  the  Church,  of  which  God  had  given 
him  the  government,  they  should  not  only  look  upon 
his  sufferings  as  glorious,  but,  being  willing  to  partake 
of  his  glory,  they  should  also  become  his  companions 
in  banishment  themselves.  But  that  this  matter  related 
neither  to  God  nor  religion  ;  that  it  concerned  merely 
a  private  person,  named  Athanasius,  whose  cause  had 
nothing  in  common  with  that  of  the  Church,  whom  the 
viblic  voice  had  long  since  accused  of  numberless 

SECT.  III.J  The  Athanasians.  321 

crimes,  whom  Councils  had  condemned,  and  who  had 
been  turned  out  of  his  see  by  the  great  Constantine, 
whose  Judgment  alone  was  sufficient  to  justify  all  that 
the  East  and  West  had  so  often  pronounced  against  him. 
That,  even  if  he  were  not  so  guilty  as  men  made  him, 
yet  it  was  necessary  to  sacrifice  him  to  the  peace  of 
the  Church,  and  to  throw  him  into  the  sea  to  appease 
the  storm,  which  he  was  the  occasion  of  raising  ;  but 
that,  the  greater  part  of  the  Bishops  having  condemned 
him,  the  defending  him  would  be  causing  a  schism, 
and  that  it  was  a  very  uncommon  sight  to  see  the 
Roman  prelate  abandon  the  care  of  the  Church,  and 
banish  himself  into  Thrace,  to  become  the  martyr  of 
one,  whom  both  divine  and  human  justice  had  so  often 
declared  guilty.  That  it  was  high  time  to  undeceive 
himself,  and  to  open  his  eyes  at  last ;  to  sec,  whether 
it  was  not  passion  in  Athanasius,  which  gave  a  false 
alarm,  and  opposed  an  imaginary  heresy,  to  make  the 
world  believe  that  they  had  a  mind  to  estabhsh 

The  arguments,  diffusively  but  instructively  reported 
in  the  above  extract,  were  enforced  by  the  threat  of 
death  as  the  consequence  of  obstinacy;  while,  on  the 
other  hand,  a  temptation  of  a  peculiar  nature  presented 
itself  to  the  exiled  bishop  in  his  very  popularity  with 

le  Roman  people,  which  was  such,  that  Constantius 
"  already  been  obliged  to  promise  them  his  restora- 
,  Moreover,  as  if  to  give  a  reality  to  the  induce-' 
ments  by  which  he  was  assailed,  a  specific  plan  of 
mutual  concession  and  concord  had  been  projected,  in 
which   Liberius   was   required   to   take    part.       The 

*  Webster's  translalion  is  used :  one  or  iwa  irrelevant  phrases,  inim- 
dlKcI  by  Waimboutg  on  the  subject  of  Koman  supremacy,  tici 



322  TJu  Atkanasians.  [chap.  iv. 

Western  Catholics  were,  as  we  have  seen,  on  all  occa- 
sions requiring  evidence  of  the  orthodoxy  of  the 
Euscbians,  before  they  consented  to  take  part  with 
them  against  Athanasius.  Constantius  then,  desirous 
of  ingratiating  himself  with  the  people  of  Rome,  and 
himself  a  Semi-Arian,  and  at  that  time  alarmed  at  the 
increasing  boldness  of  the  Anomoeans,  or  pure  Arians, 
presently  to  be  mentioned,  perceived  his  opportunity 
for  effecting  a  general  acceptance  of  a  Semi-Arian 
creed  ;  and  thus,  while  sacrificing  the  Anomoeans, 
whom  he  feared,  to  the  Catholics,  and  claiming  from 
the  Catholics  in  turn  what  were  scarcely  concessions, 
in  the  imperfect  language  of  the  West,  for  realizing 
that  religious  peace,  which  he  held  to  be  incompatible 
with  the  inflexible  orthodoxy  of  Athanasius.  More- 
over, the  heresies  of  Marcellus  and  Photinus  were  in 
favour  of  this  scheme  ;  for,  by  dwelling  upon  them,  he 
withdrew  the  eyes  of  Catholics  from  the  contrary 
errors  of  Semi-Arianism.  A  creed  was  compiled  from 
three  former  confessions,  that  of  the  orthodox  Council 
against  Paulus  (a.d.  264),  that  of  the  Dedication 
(a.D.  341),  and  one  of  the  three  published  at  Sirmium. 
Thus  carefully  composed,  it  was  signed  by  all  parties^ 
by  Libcrius  5,  by  the  Semi-Arians,  and  by  the  Euse- 
bians  ;  the  Eusebians  being  compelled  by  tlie  Emperor 
to  submit  for  the  time  to  the  dogmatic  formulae,  which 
they  had  gradually  abandoned.  Were  it  desirable  to 
enlarge  on  this  miserable  apostasy,  there  are  abundant 
materials  in  the  letters,  which  Liberius  wrote  in  renun- 
ciation of  Athanasius,  to  his  clergy,  and  to  the  Ariaa 

»  [Vide  supr.  pp.  131.  294.323.  There  is  much  difference  of  opinion,, 
however,  among  writers,  which  was  the  cre^d  which  Libcrius  signed!, 
vide  Appendix,  No.  3.] 

SECT,  in.]  The  Aihanasttins.  323 

bishops.  To  Valens  he  protests,  that  nothing  but  his 
love  of  peace,  greater  than  his  desire  of  martyrdom 
itself,  would  have  led  him  to  the  step  which  he  had 
taken  ;  in  another  he  declares,  that  he  has  but  followed 
his  conscience  in  God's  sight^.  To  add  to  his  misery, 
Constantius  suffered  him  for  a  while  to  linger  in  exile, 
after  he  had  given  way.  At  length  he  was  restored  ; 
and  at  Ariminum  in  a  measure  retrieved  his  error, 
together  with  Vincent  of  Capua. 

The  sufferings  and  trials  of  Hosius,  whieh  took  place 
about  the  same  time,  are  calculated  to  impress  the 
mind  with  the  most  sorrowful  feelings,  and  still  more 
with  a  lively  indignation  against  his  inhuman  perse- 
cutors. Shortly  before  the  conference  at  Sirmitim,  at 
which  Liberius  gave  his  allegiance  to  the  supremacy 
of  Semi-Ariaiiism,  a  creed  had  been  drawn  up  in 
the  same  city  by  Valens  and  the  other  more  daring 
members  of  the  Eusebian  body.  It  would  seem,  that 
at  this  date  Constantius  had  not  taken  the  alarm 
against  the  Anomceans,  to  the  extent  in  which  he  felt 
it  soon  aflei^wards,  on  the  news  probably  of  their  pro- 
ceedings in  the  East.  Accordingly,  the  creed  in  ques- 
tion is  of  a  mixed  character.  Not  venturing  on  the 
Aiiomwon,  as  at  Milan,  It  nevertheless  condemns  the 
use  of  the  iisia  (substance),  Homoiision,  and  Homt£iision, 
on  somewhat  of  the  equivocal  plan,  of  which  Acacius, 
as  I  have  said  above,  was  t!ie  most  conspicuous  jjatron ; 
and  being  such,  it  was  presented  for  signature  to  the 
^r^ed   Bishop   of  Corduba.      The  cruelty  which  they 

^B[:|l[iu.  Fragm.  iv,  and  vi.    [T)ic  .lulhorilj  foi  i-.-^^n..  La  itry-  iloiibLfuL] 

324  The  Athanastans.  [chap.  iv. 

exercised  to  accomplish  their  purpose,  was  worthy  of 
that  singularly  wicked  faction  which  Eusebius  had 
organized.  Hosius  was  at  this  time  loi  years  old ; 
and  had  passed  a  life,  prolonged  beyond  the  age  of 
man,  in  services  and  sufferings  in  the  cause  of  Christ. 
He  had  assisted  in  the  celebrated  Council  of  Elvira, 
in  Spain  (about  the  year  300),  and  had  been  distin- 
guished as  a  confessor  in  the  Maximinian  persecution. 
He  presided  at  the  General  Councils  of  Nicaea  and 
Sardica,  and  was  perhaps  the  only  Bishop,  besides 
Athanasius,  who  was  known  and  reverenced  at  once 
in  the  East  and  West.  When  Constantius  became  pos- 
sessed of  the  Western  world,  far  from  relaxing  his  zeal 
in  a  cause  discountenanced  at  the  Court,  Hosius  had 
exerted  himself  in  his  own  diocese  for  the  orthodox 
faith  ;  and,  when  the  persecution  began,  endeavoured 
by  letter  to  rouse  other  bishops  to  a  sense  of  the  con- 
nexion between  the  acquittal  of  Athanasius,  and  the 
maintenance  of  divine  truth.  The  Eusebians  were 
irritated  by  his  opposition  ;  he  was  summoned  to  the 
Court  at  Milan,  and,  after  a  vain  attempt  to  shake  his 
constancy,  dismissed  back  to  his  see.  The  importu- 
nities of  Constantius  being  shortly  after  renewed, 
both  in  the  way  of  threats  and  of  promises,  Hosius 
addressed  him  an  admirable  letter,  which  Athanasius 
has  preserved.  After  declaring  his  willingness  to 
repeat,  should  it  be  necessary,  the  good  confession 
which  he  had  made  in  the  heathen  persecution,  he 
exhorts  the  Emperor  to  abandon  his  unscriptural 
creed,  and  to  turn  his  ear  from  Arian  advisers.  He 
states  his  conviction,  that  the  condemnation  of  Athan- 
asius was  urged  merely  for  the  establishment  of  the 
heresy  ;  declares,  that  at  Sardica  his  accusers  had 

SECT,  in.]  The  Alhanasians.  325 

been  cliallenged  publicly  to  produce  the  proof  of  their 
allegations,  and  had  failed,  and  that  he  himself  had 
conversed  with  them  in  private,  and  could  gain  nothing 
satisfactory  from  them  ;  and  he  further  reminds  Con- 
stantius,  that  Valens  and  Ursacius  had  before  now 
retracted  the  charges,  which  they  once  urged  against 
him.  "  Change  your  course  of  action,  I  beseech  you," 
continues  the  earnest  Prelate  ;  "  remember  that  you 
are  a  man.  Fear  the  day  of  judgment ;  keep  your 
hands  clean  against  it ;  meddle  not  with  Church 
matters  ;  far  from  advising  us  about  them,  rather  seek 
instruction  from  us.  God  has  put  dominion  into  your 
hands ;  to  us  He  has  entrusted  the  management  of 
the  Church ;  and,  as  a  traitor  to  you  is  a  rebel  to  the 
God  who  ordained  you,  so  be  afraid  on  your  part,  lest, 
usurping  ecclesiastical  power,  you  become  guilty  of  a 
great  sin.  It  is  written,  '  Render  unto  Ccesar,  Cesar's, 
and  what  is  God's,  to  God.'  We  may  not  bear  rule  ; 
you,  O  Emperor,  may  not  burn  incense.  I  write  this 
Crom  a  care  for  your  soul.  As  to  your  message,  I 
remain  in  tlie  same  mind.  I  do  not  join  the  Arians. 
X  anathematize  them.  I  do  not  subscribe  the  condem- 
nation of  Athanasius^."  Hosius  did  not  address  such 
language  with  impunity  to  a  Court,  which  affected  the 
»najesty  of  oriental  despotism.  He  was  summoned  tn 
Sirmium,  and  thrown  into  prison.  There  he  remained 
lor  a  whole  year.  Tortures  were  added  to  force  the 
old  man  from  his  resolution.  He  was  scourged,  and 
afterwards  placed  upon  the  rack.  Mysterious  it  was, 
that  so  honoured  a  life  should  be  preserved  to  an 
extremity  of  age,  to  become  the  sport  and  triumph  of 

i Enemy  of  mankind.     At  length  broken  in  spirit, 
'  Alhan.  Hist,  Aiian.  ad  Monaeh.  44. 


326  The  Athanasians.  [chap.  iv. 

the  contemporary  of  Gregory  and  Dionysius^  was 
induced  to  countenance  the  impieties  of  the  genera- 
tion, into  which  he  had  lived  ;  not  indeed  signing  the 
condemnation  of  Athanasius,  for  he  spurned  that 
baseness  to  the  last,  but  yielding  subscription  to  a 
formulary,  which  forbad  the  mention  of  the  Homousioft, 
and  thus  virtually  condemned  the  creed  of  Nicaea, 
and  countenanced  the  Arian  proceedings.  Hosius 
lived  about  two  years  after  this  tragical  event :  and, 
on  his  deathbed,  he  protested  against  the  compulsion 
which  had  been  used  towards  him,  and,  with  his  last 
breath,  abjured  the  heresy  which  dishonoured  his 
Divine  Lord  and  Saviour. 


Meanwhile,  the  great  Egyptian  prelate,  seated  on  his 
patriarchal  throne,  had  calmly  prosecuted  the  work,  for 
which  he  was  raised  up,  as  if  his  name  had  not  been 
mentioned  in  the  Arian  Councils,  and  the  troubles, 
which  agitated  the  Western  Church,  were  not  the 
prelude  to  the  blow,  which  was  to  fall  on  himself. 
Untutored  in  concession  to  impiety,  by  the  experience 
or  the  prospect  of  suffering,  yet,  sensitively  alive  to 
the  difference  between  misbelief  and  misapprehension, 
while  he  punished  he  spared,  and  restored  in  the 
spirit  of  meekness,  while  he  rebuked  and  rejected 
with  power.  On  his  return  to  Alexandria,  seven  years 
previous  to  the  events  last  recorded,  congratulations 
and  professions  of  attachment  poured  in  upon  him 
from  the  provinces  of  the  whole  Roman  world,  near 
and  distant.      From  Africa  to   lUyricum,  and  from 

•  Vide  supr.  p.  125. 

SECT.  HI.]  The  Athananans.  ^2^ 

England  to  Palestine,  400  episcopal  letters  solicited 
his  communion  or  patronage  ;  and  apologies,  and  the 
officiousness  of  personal  service  were  liberally  tendered 
by  those,  who,  through  cowardice,  dulness,  or  self- 
interest,  had  joined  themselves  to  the  heretical  party. 
Nor  did  Athanasius  fail  to  improve  the  season  of 
prosperity,  for  the  true  moral  strength  and  substantial 
holiness  of  the  people  committed  to  him.  The  sacred 
services  were  diligently  attended  ;  alms  and  benefac- 
tions supplied  the  wants  of  the  friendless  and  infirm  ; 
and  the  young  turned  their  thoughts  to  that  generous 
consecration  of  themselves  to  God,  recommended  by 
St  Paul  in  times  of  trouble  and  persecution. 

In  truth  the  sufferings,  which  the  Church  of  Alex- 
andria had  lately  undergone  from  the  hands  of  the 
Eusebians,  were  sufficient  to  indispose  serious  minds 
towards  secular  engagements,  or  vows  of  duty  to  a 
fellow-mortal ;  to  quench  those  anticipations  of  quiet- 
ness and  peace,  which  the  overthrow  of  paganism  had 
at  first  excited  ;  and  to  remind  them,  that  the  girdle 
of  ccUbacy  and  the  lamp  of  watchers  best  became 
those,  on  whom  God's  judgments  might  fall  suddenly. 
Not  more  than  ten  years  were  gone  by,  since  Gregory, 
appointed  to  the  see  of  Athanasius  by  the  Council  of 
the  Dedication  5,  had  been  thrust  upon  them  by  the 
Imperial  Governor,  with  the  most  frightful  and  revolt- 
ing outrages.  Phiiagrius,  an  apostate  from  the 
Christian  faith,  and  Arsacius,  an  eunuch  of  the  Court, 
introduced  the  Euscbian  Bishop  into  his  episcopal 
city.  A  Church  besieged  and  spoiled,  the  massacre 
of    the    assembled    worshippers,    the   clergy  trodden 

tat,  the  women  subjected  to  the  most  infamous 
*  Vid.  supra,  p.  2S6. 

328  Tfie  AtJianasians.  [chap.  iv. 

profanations,  these  were  the  first  benedictory  greetings 
scattered  by  the  Arian  among  his  people.  Next, 
bishops  were  robbed,  beaten,  imprisoned,  banished; 
the  sacred  elements  of  the  Eucharist  were  scornfully 
cast  about  by  the  heathen  rabble,  which  seconded  the 
usurping  party ;  birds  and  fruits  were  offered  in  sac- 
rifice on  the  holy  table  ;  hymns  chanted  in  honour  of 
the  idols  of  paganism  ;  and  the  Scriptures  given  to 
the  flames. 

Such  had  already  been  the  trial  of  a  much-enduring 
Church  ;  and  it  might  suddenly  be  renewed  in  spite  of 
its  present  prosperity.  The  Council  of  Sardica,  con- 
voked principally  to  remedy  these  miserable  disorders, 
had  in  its  Synodal  Letter  warned  the  Alexandrian 
Catholics  against  relaxing  in  the  brave  testimony  they 
were  giving  to  the  faith  of  the  Gospel.  "  We  exhort 
you,  beloved  brethren,  before  all  things,  that  ye  hold 
the  right  faith  of  the  Catholic  Church.  Many  and 
grievous  have  been  your  sufferings,  and  many  are  the 
insults  and  injuries  inflicted  on  the  Catholic  Church, 
but  *  he,  who  endureth  unto  the  end,  the  same  shall  be 
saved.*  Wherefore,  should  they  essay  further  enor- 
mities against  you,  let  affliction  be  your  rejoicing. 
For  such  sufferings  are  a  kind  of  martyrdom,  and 
such  confessions  and  tortures  have  their  reward.  Ye 
shall  receive  from  God  the  combatant's  prize.  Where- 
fore struggle  with  all  might  for  the  sound  fajth,  and 
for  the  exculpation  of  our  brother  Athanasius,  your 
bishop.  We  on  our  part  have  not  been  silent  about 
you,  nor  neglected  to  provide  for  your  security ;  but 
have  been  mindful,  and  done  all  that  Christian  love 
requires  of  us,  suffering  with  our  suffering  brethren, 
and  accounting  their  trials  as  our  own  ^" 

^  Athan.  Apol.  cont.  Arian.  3S* 


The  time  was  now  at  hand,  which  was  anticipated 
by  the  prophetic  solicitude  of  the  Sardican  Fathers. 
The  same  year  in  which  Hosius  was  thrown  into 
prison,  the  furies  of  lieretical  malice  were  let  loose 
upon  the  Catholics  of  Alexandria.  George  of  Cap- 
padocia,  a  man  of  illiterate  mind  and  savage  man- 
ners, was  selected  by  the  Eusebians  as  their  new 
substitute  for  Athanasius  in  the  see  of  that  city ; 
and  the  charge  of  executing  this  extraordinary  de- 
termination was  committed  to  Syrianus,  Duke  of 
Egypt.  The  scenes  which  followed  are  but  the  re- 
petition, with  more  aggravated  horrors,  of  the  atro- 
cities perpetrated  by  the  intruder  Gregory.  Syrianus 
entered  Alexandria  at  night ;  and  straightway  pro- 
ceeded with  his  soldiers  to  one  of  the  churches, 
where  the  Alexandrians  were  engaged  in  the  services 
of  religion.  We  have  the  account  of  the  irruption 
from  Athanasius  himself;  who,  being  accused  by  the 
Arians  of  cowardice,  on  occasion  of  his  subsequent 
flight,  after  defending  his  conduct  from  Scripture, 
describes  the  circumstances,  under  wliich  he  was 
driven  from  his  Church.  "  It  was  now  night,"  he  says, 
"and  some  of  our  people  were  keeping  vigil,  as  com- 
munion was  in  prospect ;  when  the  Duke  Syrianus 
suddenly  came  upon  us,  with  a  force  of  above  5000 
men,  prepared  for  attack,  with  drawn  swords,  bows, 
darts,  and  clubs, . .  .  and  surrounded  the  church  with 
close  parties  of  the  soldiery,  that  none  might  escape 
from  within.  There  seemed  an  impropriety  in  my 
deserting  my  congregation  in  such  a  riot,  instead  of 
hazarding  the  danger  in  their  stead  ;  so  I  placed 
(yself  in  my  bishop's  chair,  and  bade  the  deacon  read 
e  Psalm  (Ps.  cxxxvi.).  and  the  congregation  alternate 

330  The  Athanasians.  |"chap.  iv. 

*  for  His  mercy  endureth  for  ever/  and  then  all  retire 
and  go  home.  But  the  General  bursting  at  length 
into  the  church,  and  his  soldiers  blocking  up  the 
chancel,  with  a  view  of  arresting  me,  the  clergy  and 
some  of  my  people  present  began  in  their  turn  clamor- 
ously to  urge  me  to  withdraw  myself.  However,  I 
refused  to  do  so,  before  one  and  all  in  the  church  were 
gone.  Accordingly  I  stood  up,  and  directed  prayer 
to  be  said  ;  and  then  I  urged  them  all  to  depart  first, 
for  that  it  was  better  that  I  should  run  the  risk,  than 
any  of  them  suffer.  But  by  the  time  that  most  of  them 
were  gone  out,  and  the  rest  were  following,  the 
Religious  Brethren  and  some  of  the  clergy,  who  were 
immediately  about  me,  ran  up  the  steps,  and  dragged 
me  down.  And  so,  be  truth  my  witness,  though  the 
soldiers  blockaded  the  chancel,  and  were  in  motion 
round  about  the  church,  the  Lord  leading,  I  made  my 
way  through  them,  and  by  His  protection  got  away 
unperceived ;  glorifying  God  mightily,  that  I  had 
been  enabled  to  stand  by  my  people,  and  even  to  send 
them  out  before  me,  and  yet  had  escaped  in  safety 
from  the  hands  of  those  who  sought  me^." 

The  formal  protest  of  the  Alexandrian  Christians 
against  this  outrage,  which  is  still  extant,  gives  a 
stronger  and  fuller  statement  of  the  violences  attending 
it.  "While  we  were  watching  in  prayer,"  they  say, 
"  suddenly  about  midnight,  the  most  noble  Duke  Syri- 
anus  came  upon  us  with  a  large  force  of  legionaries, 
with  arms,  drawn  swords,  and  other  militarv  weapons, 
and  their  helmets  on.  The  prayers  and  sacred  read- 
ing were  proceeding,  when  they  assaulted  the  doors, 
and,  on  these  being  laid  open  by  the  force  of  numbers, 

*  Athan.  Apol.  de  Fug.  24. 

SECT.  ni.J  The  Atkanasians. 

lue  gave  the  word  of  command.  Upon  which,  some 
began  to  let  fly  their  arrows,  and  others  to  sound  a 
charge ;  and  there  was  a  clashing  of  weapons,  and 
swords  glared  against  the  lamplight.  Presently,  the 
sacred  virgins  were  slaughtered,  numbers  trampled 
down  one  over  another  by  the  rush  of  the  soldiers, 
and  others  killed  by  arrows.  Some  of  the  soldiers 
betook  themselves  to  pillage,  and  began  to  strip  the 
females,  to  whom  the  very  touch  of  strangers  was 
more  terrible  than  death.  Meanwhile,  the  Bishop  sat 
on  his  throne,  exhorting  all  to  pray.  .  ,  .  He  was 
dragged  down,  and  almost  torn  to  pieces.  He  swooned 
away,  and  became  as  dead  ;  we  do  not  know  how  he 
got  away  from  them,  for  they  were  bent  upon  killing 
him  3." 

The  first  purpose  of  Athanasius  on  his  escape  was 
at  once  to  betake  himself  to  Constantius  ;  and  he  had 
begun  his  journey  to  him,  when  news  of  the  fury,  with 
ivhich  the  persecution  raged  throughout  the  West, 
changed  his  intention.  A  price  was  set  on  his  head, 
and  every  place  was  diligently  searched  in  the  at- 
tempt to  find  him.  He  retired  into  the  wilderness 
of  the  Thebaid,  then  inhabited  by  the  followers  of 
I'au]  and  Anthony,  the  first  hermits.  Driven  at  length 
thence  by  the  activity  of  his  persecutors,  he  went 
through  a  variety  of  strange  adventures,  which  lasted 
for  the  space  of  six  years,  till  the  death  of  Con- 
stantius allowed  him  to  return  to  Alexandria. 

His  suffragan  bishops  did  not  escape  a  persecution, 

■which  was  directed,   not   against  an  individual,  but 

against  the  Christian  faitli.      Thirty   of  them   were 

banished,  ninety  were  deprived  of  their  churches ;  and 

*  Athan.  Hisc  Monach.  8i. 

332  The  Athanasians.  £chap.  iv. 

many  of  the  inferior  clergy  suffered  with  them.  Sick- 
ness and  death  were  the  ordinary  result  of  such  hard- 
ships as  exile  involved  ;  but  direct  violence  in  good 
measure  superseded  a  lingering  and  uncertain  ven- 
geance. George,  the  representative  of  the  Arians,  led 
the  way  in  a  course  of  horrors,  which  he  carried  through 
all  ranks  and  professions  of  the  Catholic  people ;  and 
the  Jews  and  heathen  of  Alexandria,  sympathizing  in 
his  brutality,  submitted  themselves  to  his  guidance, 
and  enabled  him  to  extend  the  range  of  his  crimes  in 
every  direction.  Houses  were  pillaged,  churches  were 
burned,  or  subjected  to  the  most  loathsome  profana- 
tions, and  cemeteries  were  ransacked.  On  the  week 
after  Whitsuntide,  George  himself  surprised  a  congre- 
gation, which  had  refused  to  communicate  with  him. 
He  brought  out  some  of  the  consecrated  virgins,  and 
threatened  them  with  death  by  burning,  unless  they 
forthwith  turned  Arians.  On  perceiving  their  con- 
stancy of  purpose,  he  stripped  them  of  their  garments, 
and  beat  them  so  barbarously  on  the  face,  that  for 
some  time  afterwards  their  features  could  not  be  dis- 
tinguished. Of  the  men,  forty  were  scourged  ;  some 
died  of  their  wounds,  the  rest  were  banished.  This  is 
one  out  of  many  notorious  facts,  publicly  declared  at 
the  time,  and  uncontradicted ;  and  which  were  not 
merely  the  unauthorized  excesses  of  an  uneducated 
Cappadocian,  but  recognized  by  the  Arian  body  as 
their  own  acts,  in  a  state  paper  from  the  Imperial 
Court,  and  perpetrated  for  the  maintenance  of  the 
peace  of  the  Church,  and  of  a  good  understanding 
among  all  who  agreed  in  the  authority  of  the  sacred 

In  the  manifesto,  issued  for  the  benefit  of  the  people 

SECT.  III.]  The  Athanasians.  333 

of  Alexandria  (a.d.  356),  the  infatuated  Emperor  ap- 
plauds their  conduct  in  turning  from  a  cheat  and 
impostor,  and  siding  with  those  who  were  venerable 
men,  and  above  all  praise.  "The  majority  of  the 
citizens,"  he  continues,  "  were  blinded  by  the  influence 
of  one  who  rose  from  the  abyss,  darkly  misleading 
those  who  seek  the  truth ;  who  had  at  no  time  any 
fruitful  exhortation  to  communicate,  but  abused  the 
souls  of  his  hearers  with  frivolous  and  superficial  dis- 
cussions. .  .  .  That  noble  personage  has  not  ventured 
to  stand  a  trial,  but  has  adjudged  himself  to  banish- 
ment ;  whom  it  is  the  interest  even  of  the  barbarians 
to  get  rid  of,  lest  by  pouring  out  his  griefs  as  in  a  play 
to  the  first  comer,  he  persuade  some  of  them  to  be 
profane.  So  we  will  wish  him  a  fair  journey.  But 
for  yourselves,  only  the  select  few  are  your  equals,  or 
rather,  none  are  worthy  of  your  honours  ;  who  are 
allotted  excellence  and  sense,  such  as  your  actions 
proclaim,  celebrated  as  they  are  almost  in  every  place. 
,  .  .  .  You  have  roused  yourselves  from  the  grovelling 
I  things  of  earth  to  those  of  heaven,  the  most  reverend 
George  undertaking  to  be  your  leader,  a  man  of  all 
others  the  most  accomplished  in  such  matters;  under 
whose  care  you  will  enjoy  in  days  to  come  honourable 
hope,  and  tranquillity  at  the  present  time.  May  all 
of  you  hang  upon  his  words  as  upon  a  holy  anchor, 
that  any  cutting  and  burning  may  be  needless  on  our 
part  against  men  of  depraved  souls,  whom  we  seriously 
advise  to  abstain  from  paying  respect  to  Athanasius. 
and  to  dismiss  from  their  minds  his  troublesome 
garrulity  ;  or  such  factious  men  will  find  themselves 
involved  in  extreme  peril,  which  perhaps  no  skill  will 
be  able  to  avert   from   them.     For  it  were  absurd 

334  '^^^^  Athanasians.  [chap,  iv, 

indeed,  to  drive  about  the  pestilent  Athanasius  from 
country  to  country,  aiming  at  his  death,  though  he 
had  ten  lives,  and  not  to  put  a  stop  to  the  extrava- 
gances of  his  flatterers  and  juggling  attendants,  such 
as  it  is  a  disgrace  to  name,  and  whose  death  has  long 
been  determined  by  the  judges.  Yet  there  is  a  hope 
of  pardon,  if  they  will  desist  from  their  former  offences. 
As  to  their  profligate  leader  Athanasius,  he  distracted 
the  harmony  of  the  state,  and  laid  on  the  most  holy 
men  impious  and  sacrilegious  hands*." 

The  ignorance  and  folly  of  this  remarkable  document 
are  at  first  sight  incredible  ;  but  to  an  observant  mind 
the  common  experience  of  life  brings  sufficient  proof, 
that  there  is  nothing  too  audacious  for  party  spirit  to 
assert,  nothing  too  gross  for  monarch  or  inflamed 
populace  to  receive. 

*  Athan.  Apol.  ad  Constant.  30.  [Aug.  10,  1886.  There  is  great 
reason  for  concluding  that  the  documentary  fragments  used  above  and 
ascribed  to  St.  Hilary  and  Liberius,  pp.  322,  323,  are  not  genuine.  It  i ; 
safer  to  confine  ourselves  to  the  following  judgment  of  Bishop  Hefele 
in  his  "  Councils,"  vol.  ii.  pp.  245,  246,  ed.  1875  : — 

**  We  therefore  conclude  without  doubt  that  Liberius,  yielding  to 
force  and  sinking  under  many  years  of  confinement  and  exile,  signed  the 
so-called  third  Sirmian  formula,  that  is,  the  collection  of  older  formulas 
of  faith  accepted  at  the  third  Sirmian  Synod  of  358.  He  did  not  do 
this  without  scruples,  for  the  Semi-Arian  character  and  origin  of  these 
formulas  were  not  unknown  to  him  ;  but,  as  they  contained  no  direct 
or  express  rejection  of  the  orthodox  faith,  and  as  it  was  represented  to 
him,  on  the  other  side,  that  the  Nicene  biioovaio^  formed  a  cloak  for 
Sabellianism  and  Photinism,  he  allowed  himself  to  be  persuaded  to 
accept  the  third  Sirmian  confession.  But  by  so  doing  he  only  renounced 
the  letter  of  the  Nicene  faith,  not  the  orthodox  faith  itself."] 




It  remains  to  relate  the  circumstances  of  the  open 
disunion  and  schism  between  the  Semi-Arians  and 
the  Anomceans.  In  order  to  set  this  clearly  before 
the  reader,  a  brief  recapitulation  must  first  be  made  of 
the  history  of  the  heresy,  wiiich  has  been  thrown  into 
the  shade  in  the  last  Section,  by  the  narrative  of  the 
ecclesiastical  events  to  which  It  gave  occasion. 

The  Semi-Arian  school  was  the  offspring  of  the 
ingenious  refinements,  under  which  the  Eusebians 
<^onccaled  impieties,  which  the  temper  of  the  faithful 
'■fciade  it  inexpedient  for  them  to  avow'.  Its  creed 
lireceded  the  party ;  that  Is,  those  subtleties,  which 
■^■%-ere  too  feeble  to  entangle  the  clear  intellects  of  the 
^*chool  of  Lucian,  produced  after  a  time  their  due 
^Srffect  upon  the  natural  subjects  of  them,  viz.  men  who. 
'v.^ith  more  devotional  feeling  than  the  Arians,  had  less 
X^lai"  sense,  and  a  like  deficiency  of  humility,  A 
i'lalonic  fancifuhicss  made  them  the  victims  of  an 
->^ristotelic  subtlety  ;  and  in  the  philosophising  Euse- 
l^ius  and  the  sophist  Asterius,  we  recognize  the 
^ippropriate  inventors,  though  hardly  the  sincere  dis- 
«:iples,  of  the  new  creed.  For  a  time,  the  distinction 
between  the  Semi-Arians  and  the  Eusebians  did  not 

'  f'"' 


336  The  Anomoeans.  [chap,  iv, 

openly  appear ;  the  creeds  put  forth  by  the  whole 
party  being  all,  more  or  less,  of  a  Semi-Arian  cast, 
down  to  the  Council  of  Sirmium  inclusive  (A.D.  351), 
in  which  Photinus  was  condemned.     In  the  meanwhile 
the  Eusebians,  little  pleased  with  the  growing  dogma- 
tism of  members  of  their  own  body,  fell  upon   the 
expedient  of  confining  their  confessions  to  Scripture 
terms ;  which,   when   separated   from   their  context, 
were  of  course  inadequate  to  concentrate  and  ascertain 
the  true  doctrine.     Hence  the  formula  of  the  Homosoit; 
which  was  introduced  by  Acacius  with  the  express 
purpose  of  deceiving  or  baffling  the  Semi-Arian  mem- 
bers  of   his   party.       This   measure  was   the    more 
necessary  for  Eusebian  interests,  inasmuch  as  a  new 
variety  of  the  heresy  arose  in  the  East  at  the  same 
time,  advocated  by  Aetius  and  Eunomius  ;  who,  by 
professing  boldly  the  pure  Arian  tenet,  alarmed  Con- 
stantius,   and  threw  him   back  upon  Basil,  and  the 
other  Semi-Arians.     This  new  doctrine,  called  Ano- 
moean,  because  it  maintained  that  the  tisia  or  substance 
of  the  Son  was  unlike  {avofiouos)  the  Divine  iisia,  was 
actually   adopted  by  one  portion  of  the  Eusebians, 
Valens  and   his  rude  Occidentals  ;  whose  language 
and  temper,  not  admitting  the  refinements  of  Grecian 
genius,  led  them  to  rush  from  orthodoxy  into  the  most 
hard  and  undisguised  impiety.     And  thus  the  parties 
stand  at  the  date  now  before  us  (A.D.  356 — 361)  ;  Con- 
stantius  being  alternately  swayed  by  Basil,  Acacius, 
and  Valens,  that  is,  by  the  Homoeiisian,  the  Homoean, 
and   the  Anomcean, — ^the   Semi-Arian,   the  Scriptu- 
ralist,  and  the  Arian  pure  ;  by  his  respect  for  Basil  and 
the  Semi-Arians,  the  talent  of  Acacius,  and  his  per- 
sonal attachment  to  Valens. 

SECT.  IV.]  The  Anoiiicetiiis.  337 

Aetius,  the  founder  of  the  Anomceans,  is  a  remark- 
able instance  of  the  struggles  and  success  of  a  restless 
and  aspiring  mind  under  the  pressure  of  difficulties. 
He  was  a  native  of  Antioch  ;  his  father,  who  had  an 
office  under  the  governor  of  the  province,  dying  when 
he  was  a  child,  he  was  made  the  servant  or  slave  of  a 
vine-dresser.  He  was  first  promoted  to  the  trade  of  a 
goldsmith  or  travelling  tinker,  according  to  the  con- 
flicting testimony  of  his  friends  and  enemies.  Falling 
in  with  an  itinerant  practitioner  in  medicine,  lie 
acquired  so  much  knowledge  of  the  art,  as  to  pro- 
fess it  himself;  and,  the  further  study  of  his  new 
profession  introducing  him  to  the  disputations  of  his 
more  learned  brethren,  he  manifested  such  acuteness 
and  boldness  in  argument,  that  he  was  soon  engaged, 
after  the  manner  of  the  Sophists,  as  a  paid  advocate 
for  such  physicians  as  wished  their  own  theories  ex- 
hibited in  the  most  advantageous  form.  The  schools 
of  Medicine  were  at  that  time  infected  with  Arianism, 
3nd  thus  introduced  him  to  the  science  of  theology,  as 
Well  as  that  of  disputation  ;  giving  him  a  bias  towards 
Jiercsy,  which  was  soon  after  confirmed  by  the  tuition 
of  Paulinus,  Bishop  of  Tyre.  At  Tyre  he  so  boldly 
conducted  the  principles  of  Arianism  to  their  legiti- 
mate results,  as  to  scandalize  the  Eusebian  successor  of 
IPaulinus  ;  who  forced  him  to  retire  to  Anazarbus,  and 
to  resume  his  former  trade  of  a  goldsmith.  The  energy 
of  Aetius,  however,  could  not  be  restrained  by  the 
obstacles  which  birth,  education,  and  decency  threw  in 
his  way.  He  made  acquaintance  with  a  teacher  of 
grammar ;    and,   readily   acquiring   a   smattering  of 

338  The  Anomceans.  [chap.  iv. 

polite  literature,  he  was  soon  enabled  to  criticise  his 
master's  expositions  of  sacred  Scripture  before  his 
pupils.  A  quarrel,  as  might  be  expected,  ensued  ;  and 
Aetius  was  received  into  the  house  of  the  Bishop  of 
Anazarbus,  who  had  been  one  of  the  Arian  prelates  at 
Nicaea.  This  man  was  formerly  mentioned  as  one  of 
the  rudest  and  most  daring  among  the  first  assailants 
of  our  Lord's  divinity^.  It  is  probable,  however,  that, 
after  signing  the  Homousiojt,  he  had  surrendered  him- 
self to  the  characteristic  duplicity  and  worldliness  of 
the  Eusebian  party ;  for  Aetius  is  said  to  have  com- 
plained, that  he  was  deficient  in  depth,  and,  in  spite  of 
his  hospitality,  looked  out  for  another  instructor.  Such 
an  one  he  found  in  the  person  of  a  priest  of  Tarsus, 
who  had  been  from  the  first  a  consistent  Arian  ;  and 
with  him  he  read  the  Epistles  of  St.  Paul.  Returning 
to  Antioch,  he  became  the  pupil  of  Leontius,  in  the 
prophetical  Scriptures ;  and,  after  a  while,  put  himself 
under  the  instruction  of  an  Aristotelic  sophist  of 
Alexandria.  Thus  accomplished,  he  was  ordained 
deacon  by  Leontius  (A.D.  350),  who  had  been  lately 
raised  to  the  patriarchal  See  of  Antioch.  Thus  the 
rise  of  the  Anomcean  sect  coincides  in  point  of  time 
with  the  death  of  Constans,  an  event  already  noticed 
in  the  history  of  the  Eusebians,  as  transferring  the 
Empire  of  the  West  to  Constantius,  and,  thereby 
furthering  their  division  into  the  Homcean  and 
Homceusian  factions.  Scarcely  had  Aetius  been 
ordained,  when  the  same  notorious  irregularities  in 
his  carriage,  whatever  they  were,  which  had  more 
than  once  led  to  his  expulsion  from  the  lay  com- 
munion of  the  Arians,  caused  his  deposition  from  the 

■  [Vide  supra,  p.  239J 

iCT.  IV.] 

The  Anonwsans. 


tidiaconate,  by  the  very  prelate  who  had  promoted  him 
;  After  tliis,  little  is  known  of  him  for  several 
s  ;  excepting  a  dispute,  which  he-  held  with  the 
■ni-Arian  Basil,  which  marks  his  rising  importance. 
During  the  interval,  he  ingratiated  himself  with 
Gallus,  the  brother  of  Julian  ;  and  was  implicated  in 
his  political  offences.  Escaping,  however,  the  anger 
F  Constantius,  by  his  comparative  insiijMificance,  he 
tired  to  Alexandria,  and  lived  for  some  time  in  the 
i^in  of  George  of  Cappadocia,  who  allowed  him  to 
officiate  as  deacon.  Such  was  at  this  time  the  cha- 
racter of  the  clergy,  whom  the  Arians  had  introduced 
into  the  Syrian  Churches,  that  this  despicable  adven- 

»  hirer,  whose  manners  were  as  odious,  as  his  life  was 
eccentric,  and  his  creed  blasphemous,  had  sufficient 
influence  to  found  a  sect,  which  engaged  the  attention 
of  the  learned  Semi-Arians  at  Ancyra  (a.d.  358),  and 
lias  employed  the  polemical  powers  of  the  orthodox 
Fathers,  Basil  and  Gregory  Nyssen. 

Eunomius,  his  disciple,  was  the  principal  disputant 
in  the  controversy.  With  more  learning  than  Aetius, 
he  was  enabled  to  complete  and  fortify  the  Anomcean 
System,  inheriting  from  his  master  the  two  peculiarities 
of  character  which  belong  to  his  school ;  the  first,  a 
fskculty  of  subtle  disputation  and  hard  mathematical 
»"easoning,  the  second,  a  fierce,  and  in  one  sense  an 
•ionest,  disdain  of  compromise  and  dissimulation. 
These  had  been  the  two  marks  of  Arianism  at  its 
ftist  rise  ;  and  the  first  associates  of  Arius,  who,  after 
l>is  submission  to  Constantine,  had  kept  aloof  from 
tlig  Court  party  in  disgust,  now  joyfully  welcomed 
and  joined  the  Anomceans.     The  new  sect  justified  anticipations  of  its  boldness.  The  same  im- 

340  The  Anonioeans.  [chap.  iv. 

patience,  with  which  Aetius  had  received  the  ambigu- 
ous explanations  of  the  Eusebian  Bishop  of  Anazar- 
bus,  was  expressed  by  Eunomius  for  the  Acacianism 
of  Eudoxius  of  Antioch,  who  in  vain  endeavoured  to 
tutor  him  into  a  less  real  and  systematic  profession  of 
the  Arian  tenets.  So  far  did  his  party  carry  their 
vehemence,  as  even  to  re-baptize  their  Christian  con- 
verts, as  though  they  had  been  heathen  ;  and  that,  not 
in  the  case  of  Catholics  only,  but,  to  the  great  offence 
of  the  Eusebians,  even  of  those,  whom  they  converted 
from  the  other  forms  of  Arianism^.  Earnestness  is 
always  respectable ;  and,  if  it  be  allowable  to  speak 
with  a  sort  of  moral  catachresis,  the  Anomoeans 
merited  on  this  account,  as  well  as  ensured,  a  success, 
which  a  false  conciliation  must  not  hope  to  obtain. 


The  progress  of  events  rapidly  carried  them  forward 
upon  the  scene  of  ecclesiastical  politics.  Valens,  who 
by  this  time  had  gained  the  lead  of  the  Western 
Bishops,  was  seconded  in  his  patronage  of  theni  by 
the  eunuchs  of  the  Court ;  of  whom  Eusebius,  the- 
Grand  Chamberlain,  had  unlimited  sway  over  the 
weak  mind  of  the  Emperor.     The  concessions,  made- 

'  Epiph.  Hser.  Ixxvi.  fin.  Bingham,  xi.  i.  §  10.  [Thus,  bold  as  were- 
the  original  Arians,  the  Anomoeans  were  bolder  and  more  consistent. 
Athanasius  challenges  the  former,  if  they  dare,  to  speak  out.  Basil  says- 
"  Aetius  was  the  first  to  teach  openly  that  the  Father's  substance  was  un- 
like the  Son's."  Vide  Ath.  Tr.  voL  ii.  pp.  34,  287—292  However^ 
Athanasius  interprets  Anus's  Thalia  to  say  that  the  Persons  of  the  Holjr 

o.voyLOioi)  each  other  in  substance  and  glor^ 
wdthout  limit."  Orat.  §  6.  De  Syn.  §  15.  Again,  Arius  held  thaS 
the  Divine  Being  was  incomprehensible  (Athan.  de  Syn.  §  15),  but  ths 
Auomccans  denied  it.     Socr.  iv.  7. 1 

SECT.  iv.J  The  Anomceans. 

by  Liberius  and  Hosius  to  the  Eusebian  party,  fur- 
nished an  additional  countenance  to  Arianism,  being 
misrepresented  as  actual  advances  towards  theheretical 
doctrine.    The  inartificial  cast  of  the  Western  theology, 
which    scarcely    recognized    any    middle   hypothesis 
between  that  of  the  Homoiision  and  pure  Arianism, 
strengthened  the  opinion  that  those,  who  had  aban- 
c3oned  the  one,  must  in  fact  have  embraced  the  other, 
^nd,  as  if  this  were  not  enough,  it  appears  that  an 
Anomoean  creed  was  circulated  in  the  East,  with  the 
pretence  that  it  was  the  very  formula  which  Hosius 
and  Liberius  had  subscribed.     Under  these  circum- 
stances, the  Anomceans  were  soon  strong  enough  to  aid 
the  Eusebians  of  the  East  in  their  contest  with  the 
Semi-Arians*.   Events  in  the  Churches  of  Antioch  and 
Jerusalem   favoured   their   enterprise.     It  happening 
'hat  Acacius  of  Csesarea  and  Cyril  of  Jerusalem  were 
nVals  for  the  primacy  of  Palestine,  the  reputed  con- 
nexion of  Cyril  with  the  Semi-Arian  party  had  the 
"^ft" ect  of  throwing  Acacius,  though  the  author  of  the 
*^omceon,  on  the  side  of  its  Anomcean  assailants; 
Accordingly,  with  the  aid  of  the  neighbouring  Bishops, 
•^e  succeeded  in  deposing  Cyril,  and  sending  him  out 
^T  the  country.     At  Antioch,  the  cautious  Leontius, 
"'\.rian  Bishop,  dying  {a.D.   357),  the  eunuchs  of  the 
^~^  ourt  contrived  to  place  Eudoxius  in  his  see,  a  man  of 
*~^:stless  and  intriguing  temper,   and  opposed  to  tlie 
^iemi-Arians.    One  of  his  first  acts  was  to  hold  a  Coun- 
'^^il,  at  which  Acacius  was  present,  as  well  as  Aetius  and 
I^unomius,  the  chiefs  of  the  Anomceans.     There  the 
Assembled  Bishops  did  not  venture  beyond  the  lan- 
tjuagc  of  the  second  creed  of  Sirmium,  which  Hosius 
'  Va\is.  lom.  ii.  i.  g,  %  b.  [Tillcmom,  1.  6.  p-  *2o.] 


The  Anomceans. 

[chap,  n 

had  signed,  and  which  kept  clear  of  Anomcean  d 
trine  ;  but  theyjiad  no  difficulty  in  addressing  a  lettef  I 
of  thanks  antjpcongratulations  to  the  party  of  the  \ 
Anomcean  Valers,  for  having  at  Simiium  brought  te  \ 
troubles  of  the  West  to  so  satisfactory  a  terminatioBM 

The  election,  however,  of  Eudoxius,  and  this  Coo 
cil  which  followed  it  were  not  to  pass  unchallengedfl 
the  Semi-Arians.  Mention  has  already  been  made 
one  GeorgeS,  a  presbyter  of  Alexandria  ;  who,  b 
among  the  earliest  supporters  of  Arius,  was  deg 
by  Alexander,  but,  being  received  by  the  EuseHll 
into  the  Church  of  Antioch.  became  at  length  Bish 
of  Laodicea.  George  was  justly  offended  at  the  p 
motion  of  Eudoxius,  without  the  consent  of  him 
and  Mark  of  Arethusa,  the  most  considerable  BislJ 
of  Syria  ;  and,  at  this  Juncture,  took  part  against  fl 
combination  of  Homoeans  and  Anomceans,  at  Antk 
who  had  just  published  their  assent  to  the  s 

creed   of  Sirmium.      Falling  in   with    some   clo 

whom  Eudoxius  had  excommunicated,  he  sent  Icttoifl 
by  them  to  Macedonius,  Basil  of  Ancyra,  and  olhff  [ 
leaders  of  the  Semi-Arians,  intreating  them  to  raisea  J 
protest  against  the   proceedings   of  the   Council  fl 
Antioch,  and  so  to  oblige  Eudoxius  to  separate  h 
self  from  Aetius  and  the  Anomceans.     This  i 
strancc  produced  its  effect;  and,  under  pretence  I 
the  dedication  of  a  Church,  a  Council  was  immediatl 
held  by  the  Scmi-Arian  party  at  Ancyra  (A.D.  35^)^ 
which  the  Anomcean  heresy  was  condemned. 
Synodal  letter,  which  they  published,  professed  to8 
grounded  on  the  Semi-Arian  creeds  of  the  DedicaCf 
(A.D.  341),  of  Philippopolis  (A.D.  347),  and  of  Sim" 

^^^^^^j'/ie  Anomaans.  343 

^A-D.  35 1),  when  Photinus  was  condemned  and  deposed. 
2t  is  a  valuable  document,  even  as  a  defence  of  ortho- 
doxy ;  its  error  consisting  in  its  obstinate  rejection  of 
the  Nicene  Homoiision,  the  sole  practical  bulwark  of 
the  Catholic  faith  against  the  misrepresentations  of 
heresy, — against  a  sort  of  tritheism  on  the  one  hand, 
and  a  degraded  conception  of  the  Son  and  Spirit  on 
the  other. 

The  two  parties  thus  at  Issue,  appealed  to  Constan- 
tius  at  Sirmium.  That  weak  Prince  had  lately  sanc- 
tioned the  almost  Acacian  creed  of  Valcns.  which 
Hosius  had  been  compelled  to  subscribe,  when  the 
deputation  from  Antioch  arrived  at  the  Imperial 
Court  ;  and  he  readily  gave  his  assent  to  the  new 
edition  of  it  which  Eudoxius  had  promulgated. 
Scarcely  had  he  done  so,  when  the  Semi-Arians 
made  their  appearance  from  Ancyra,  with  Basil  at 
their  head  ;  and  succeeded  so  well  in  representing  the 
dangerous  character  of  the  creed  passed  at  Antioch, 
that,  recalling  the  messenger  who  had  been  sent  off  to 
that  city,  he  forthwith  held  the  Conference,  mentioned 
in  the  foregoing  Section,  in  which  he  imposed  a  Semi- 
Arian  creed  on  all  parties,  Eudoxius  and  Valens,  the 
representatives  of  the  Euscbians,  being  compelled,  as 
well  as  the  orthodox  Libcrius,  to  sign  a  fonnulaiy, 
which  Basil  compiled  from  the  creeds  against  Paulus 
of  Samosata,  and  Photinus  (a.d,  264.  351),  and  the 
creed  of  Lucian,  published  by  the  Council  of  the 
^_   Dedication  (a.d.  341).     Yet  in  spite  of  the  learning,  ^ 

^Lsnd  personal  respectability  of  the  Semi-Arians,  which  J 

^^■At  the  moment  exerted  this  strong  influence  over  the  H 

^^V.S)Ind  of  Constantius,  the  dexterity  of  the  Eusebians  fl 

^B  in  disputation  and  intrigue  was  ultimately  successful.  H 

344  ^'^^  Anomceans.  [chap.  iv. 

Though  seventy  Bishops  of  their  party  were  im- 
mediately banished,  these  were  in  a  few  months  rein- 
stated by  the  capricious  Emperor,  who  from  that  time 
inclined  first  to  the  Acacian  or  Homcean,  and  then  to 
the  open  Anomoean  or  pure  Arian  doctrine ;  and  who 
before  his  death  (A.D.  361)  received  baptism  from  the 
hands  of  Euzoius,  one  of  the  original  associates  of 
Arius,  then  recently  placed  in  the  see  of  Antioch. — 
The  history  of  this  change,  with  the  Councils  attend- 
ing it,  will  bring  us  to  the  close  of  this  chapter. 

The  Semi-Arians,  elated  by  their  success  with  the 
Emperor,  followed  it  up  by  obtaining  his  consent  for 
an  Ecumenical  Council,  in  which  the  faith  of  the 
Christian  Church  should  definitely  be  declared  for 
good.  A  meeting  of  the  whole  of  Christendom  had 
not  been  attempted,  except  in  the  instance  of  the 
Council  of  Sardica,  since  the  Nicene  ;  and  the  Sar- 
dican  itself  had  been  convoked  principally  to  decide 
upon  the  charges  urged  against  Athanasius,  and  not 
to  open  the  doctrinal  question.  Indeed  it  is  evident, 
that  none  but  the  heterodox  party,  now  dominant, 
could  consistently  debate  an  article  of  belief,  which 
the  united  testimony  of  the  Churches  of  the  East  and 
West  had  once  for  all  settled  at  Nicaea.  This,  then, 
was  the  project  of  the  Semi-Arians.  They  aimed  at 
a  renewal  on  an  Ecumenical  scale  of  the  Council  of 
the  Dedication  at  Antioch  in  A.D.  341.  The  Eusebian 
party,  however,  had  no  intention  of  tamely  submitting 
to  defeat.  Perceiving  that  it  would  be  more  for  their 
own  interest  that  the  prelates  of  the  East  and  West 
should  not  meet  in  the  same  place  (two  bodies  being 

.  IV,]  The  Anomceans. 

more  manageable  than  one),  they  exerted  themselves  so 
.strenuously  with  the  assistance  of  the  eunuchs  of  the 
lace,  that  at  last  it  was  determined,  that,  while  the 
ientals  met  at  Seleucia  in  Isauria,  the  Occidental 
Council  should  be  held  at  Ariminum,  in  Italy.  Next, 
a  previous  Conference  was  held  at  Sirmium,  in  order 
to  determine  on  the  creed  to  be  presented  to  the 
bipartite  Council  ;  and  here  again  the  Eusebians 
g:i.ied  an  advantage,  though  not  at  once  to  the 
extent  of  their  wishes.  Warned  by  the  late  indigna- 
tion of  Constantius  against  the  Anomoian  tenet,  they 
did  not  attempt  to  rescue  it  from  his  displeasure ;  but 
they  struggled  for  the  adoption  of  the  Acacia n 
JIoiiia'OH,  which  the  Emperor  had  already  both  re- 
ceived and  abandoned,  and  they  actually  effected 
the  adoption  of  the  "like  in  all  things  according  to  the 
Scriptures" — a  phrase  in  which  the  Semi-Arians 
indeed  included  their  "like  in  substance'"  or  Homw- 
iision,  but  which  did  not  necessarily  refer  to  substance 
or  nature  at  all.  Under  these  circumstances  the  two 
Councils  met  in  the  autumn  of  A.D.  359,  under  the 
nominal  superintendence  of  the  Semi-Arians  ;  but  on 
the  Eusebian  side,  the  sharp-witted  Acacius  under- 
taking to  deal  with  the  disputatious  Greeks,  the 
overbearing  and  cruel  Valens  with  the  plainer  Latins. 
About  160  Bishops  of  the  Eastern  Church  assembled 
at  Seleucia^,  of  whom  not  above  forty  were  Eusebians. 
Far  the  greater  number  were  professed  Semi-Arians  ; 
the  Egyptian  prelates  alone,  of  whom  but  twelve  or 
thirteen  were  present,  displaying  themselves,  as  at  the 
first,  the  bold  and  faithful  adherents  of  the  Homoiision. 
It  was   soon  evident   that  the   forced   reconciliation 

^H    i[  was   SOI 


[Viile  .Mb.  Tr.  vol.  i.  p,  7S,  notes  B,  9  J 

346  The  Anomceans.  [chap.  iv. 

which  Constantlus  had  imposed  on  the  two  parties  at 
Sirmium,  was  of  no  avail  in  their  actual  deliberations. 
On  each  side  an  alteration  of  the  proposed  formula 
was  demanded.  In  spite  of  the  sanction  given  by 
Basil  and.  Mark  to  the  ^^  like  in  all  things y'  ^^  majority 
of  their  partisans  would  be  contented  with  nothing 
short  of  the  definite  ^'like  in  snbsiance^'  or  Homceusion^ 
which  left  no  opening  (as  they  considered)  to  evasion ; 
and  in  consequence  proposed  to  return  to  Lucian's 
creed,  adopted  by  the  Council  of  the  Dedication. 
Acacius,  on  the  other  hand,  not  satisfied  with  the 
advantage  he  had  just  gained  in  the  preliminary 
meeting  at  Sirmium,  where  the  mention  of  the  usia 
or  substance  was  dropped  (although  but  lately  imposed 
by  Constantius  on  all  parties,  in  the  formulary  which 
Liberius  signed),  proposed  a  creed  in  which  the 
Homoiision  and  Homceiision,  were  condemned,  the 
Aiiomceon  anathematized,  as  the  source  of  confusion 
and  schism,  and  his  own  Ho7nceo7t  adopted  (that  is, 
''like,''  without  the  addition  of  **  in  all  things  " )  ;  and 
when  he  found  himself  unable  to  accomplish  his  pur- 
pose, not  waiting  for  the  formal  sentence  of  deposition, 
which  the  Semi-Arians  proceeded  to  pronounce  upon 
himself  and  eight  others,  he  set  off  to  Constantinople, 
where  the  Emperor  then  was,  hoping  there,  in  the 
absence  of  Basil  and  his  party,  to  gain  what  had  been 
denied  him  in  the  preliminary  meeting  at  Sirmium. 
It  so  happened,  however,  that  his  object  had  been 
effected  even  before  his  arrival ;  for,  a  similar  quarrel 
having  resulted  from  the  meeting  at  Ariminum,  and 
deputies  from  the  rival  parties  having  thence  similarly 
been  despatched  to  Constantius,  a  Conference  had 
already  taken  place  at  a  city  called  Nice  or  Nicaea,  in 


SECT.  IV.]  The  Ariomceans. 

the  neiglibourhood  of  Hadrianoplc,  and  an  emendated 
creed  adopted,  in  which,  not  only  the  safeguard  of  the 
''in  all  things"  was  omitted,  and  the  usia  condemned, 
but  even  the  word  Hypostasis  (Subsistence  or  Person) 
also,  on  the  ground  of  its  being  a  refinement  on 
Scripture.  So  much  had  been  already  gained  by  the 
influence  of  Valens,  wlien  the  arrival  of  Acacius  at 
Constantinople  gave  fresh  activity  to  the  Eusebian 

Thereupon  a  Council  was  summoned  in  the  Imperial 
city  of  the  neighbouring  Dishops,  principally  of  those 
of  Bithynia,  and  the  Acacian  formula  of  Ariminum 
confirmed.  Constantius  was  easily  persuaded  to 
believe  of  Basil,  what  had  before  been  asserted  of 
Athana-iius,  that  he  was  the  impediment  to  the  settle- 
riient  of  the  question,  and  to  the  tranciuillity  of  the 
Church.  Various  charges  of  a  civil  and  ecclesiastical 
nature  were  alleged  against  him  and  other  Semi- 
Arians,  as  formerly  against  Athanasius,  with  what 
degree  of  truth  it  is  impossible  at  this  day  to  deter- 
mine ;  and  a  sentence  of  deposition  was  issued  against 
them.  Cyril  of  Jerusalem,  Eleusius  of  Cyzicus,  Eusta- 
thius  of  Sebaste,  and  Macedonius  of  Constantinople, 
were  in  the  number  of  those  who  suffered  with  Basil; 
Macedonius  bemg  succeeded  by  Eudoxius,  who,  thus 
seated  in  the  first  see  of  the  East,  became  subsequently 
the  principal  stay  of  Arianism  under  the  Emperor 

This  triumph  of  the  Eusebian  party  in  the  East, 
took  place  in  the  beginning  of  A.D.  360;  by  which 
lime  the  Council  of  Ariminum  in  the  West,  had  been 
brought  to  a  conclusion.  To  it  wc  must  now  turn  our 

348  The  Anomceans.  [chap.  iv. 

The  Latin  Council  had  commenced  its  deliberations, 
before  the  Orientals  had  assembled  at  Seleucia  ;  yet  it 
did  not  bring  them  to  a  close  till  the  end  of  the  year. 
The  struggle  between  the  Eusebians  and  their  oppo- 
nents had  been  so  much  the  more  stubborn  in  the 
West,  in  proportion  as  the  latter  were  more  numerous 
there,  and  further  removed  from  Arian  doctrine,  and 
Valens  on  the  other  hand  more  unscrupulous,  and 
armed  with  fuller  powers.  Four  hundred  Bishops 
were  collected  at  Ariminum,  of  whom  but  eighty  were 
Arians  ;  and  the  civil  officer,  to  whom  Constantius  had 
committed  the  superintendence  of  their  proceedings, 
had  orders  not  to  let  them  stir  out  of  the  city,  till  they 
should  agree  upon  a  confession  of  faith.  At  the 
opening  of  the  Council,  Valens,  Ursacius,  Germinius, 
Auxentius,  Caius,  and  Demophilus,  the  Imperial 
Commissioners,  had  presented  to  the  assembly  the 
formula  of  the  ^Hikein  all  things'^  agreed  upon  in  the 
preliminary  conference  at  Sirmium ;  and  demanded, 
that,  putting  aside  all  strange  and  mysterious  terms 
of  theology,  it  should  be  at  once  adopted  by  the 
assembled  Fathers.  They  had  received  for  answer, 
that  the  Latins  determined  to  adhere  to  the  formulary 
of  Nicaea  ;  and  that,  as  a  first  step  in  their  present 
deliberations,  it  was  necessary  that  all  present  should 
forthwith  anathematize  all  heresies  and  innovations, 
beginning  with  that  of  Arius.  The  Commissioners 
had  refused  to  do  so,  and  had  been  promptly  con- 
demned and  deposed,  a  deputation  of  ten  being  sent 
from  the  Council  to  Constantius,  to  acquaint  him  with 
the  result  of  its  deliberations.  The  issue  of  this 
mission  to  the  Court,  to  which  Valens  opposed  one 
from  his  own  party,  has  been  already  related.     Con- 

Sect,  iv.]  The  Anovtceans. 

stantius,  with  a  view  of  wearing  out  the  Latin  Fathers, 
pretended  that  the  barbarian  war  required  his  im- 
mediate attention,  and  delayed  the  consideration  of 
the  question  till  the  beginning  of  October,  several 
months  after  the  opening  of  the  Council ;  and  then, 
frightening  the  Catholic  deputation  into  compliance, 
lie  effi3cted  at  Nice  the  adoption  of  the  Homcean  creed 
(that  is,  the  "like  "  without  the  "in  all  things ")  and 
sent  it  back  to  Ariminum. 

The  termination  of  the  Council  there  assembled  was 
disgraceful  to  its  members,  but  more  so  to  the  Emperor 
himself.  Distressed  by  their  long  confinement,  impa- 
tient at  their  absence  from  their  respective  dioceses, 
and  apprehensive  of  the  approaching  winter,  they 
began  to  waver.  At  first,  indeed,  they  refused  to  com- 
municate with  their  own  apostate  deputies  ;  but  these, 
almost  in  self-defence,  were  active  and  successful  in 
bringing  over  others  to  their  new  opinions,  A  threat 
was  held  out  by  Taurus,  the  Pr^torian  Prefect,  who 
superintended  the  discussions,  that  fifteen  of  the  most 
obstinate  should  be  sent  into  banishment ;  and  Valcns 
was  importunate  in  the  use  of  such  theological  argu- 
ments and  explanations,  as  were  likely  to  effect  his 
object.  The  Prefect  conjured  them  with  tears  to 
abandon  an  unfruitful  obstinacy,  to  reflect  on  the 
length  of  their  past  confinement,  the  discomfort  of 
their  situation,  the  rigours  of  the  winter,  and  to  con- 
sider, that  there  was  but  one  possible  termination  of 
the  difficulty,  which  lay  with  themselves,  not  with 
him.  Valens,  on  the  other  hand,  affirmed  that  the 
Eastern  bishops  at  Seleucia  had  abandoned  the  usia ; 
and  he  demanded  of  those  who  still  stood  their  ground, 
w]iat  objection  they   could  make  to  the   Scriptural 


350  The  Anomceans.  [chap.  iv. 

creed  proposed  to  them,  and  whether,  for  the  sake  of  a 
word,  they  would  be  the  authors  of  a  schism  between 
Eastern  and  Western  Christendom.  He  affirmed, 
that  the  danger  apprehended  by  the  Catholics  was 
but  chimerical ;  that  he  and  his  party  condemned 
Arius  and  Arianism,  as  strongly  as  themselves,  and 
were  only  desirous  of  avoiding  a  word,  which  con- 
fessedly is  not  in  Scripture,  and  had  in  past  time 
been  productive  of  much  scandal.  Then,  to  put  his 
sincerity  to  the  proof,  he  began  with  a  loud  voice  to 
anathematize  the  maintainers  of  the  Arian  blas- 
phemies in  succession ;  and  he  concluded  by  declaring, 
that  he  believed  the  Word  to  be  God,  begotten  of  God 
before  all  time,  and  not  in  the  number  of  the  creatures, 
and  that  whoever  should  say  that  He  was  a  creature  as 
other  creatures,  was  anathema.  The  foregoing  history 
of  the  heresy  has  sufficiently  explained  how  the 
Arians  evaded  the  force  of  these  strong  declarations  ; 
but  the  inexperienced  Latins  did  not  detect  their 
insincerity.  Satisfied,  and  glad  to  be  released,  they 
gave  up  the  HomousioHy  and  signed  the  formula  of 
the  Homoeon  ;  and  scarcely  had  they  separated,  when 
Valens,  as  might  be  expected,  boasted  of  his  victory, 
arguing  that  the  faith  of  Nicaea  had  been  condemned 
by  the  very  circumstance  of  his  being  allowed  to 
confess,  that  the  Son  was  "  not  a  creature  as  other 
creatures,"  and  so  to  imply,  that,  though  not  like 
other  creatures,  still  He  was  created.  Thus  ended  this 
celebrated  Council ;  the  result  of  which  is  well  cha- 
racterized in  the  lively  statement  of  Jerome  :  "  The 
whole  world  groaned  in  astonishment  to  find  itself 
Arian  7." 

'  [*'  Ingemuit  totus  orbis,  et  Arianum  se  esse  miratus  est."l 

SECT.  IV.]  The  Anommans,  351 

In  the  proceedings  attenciaiit  on  llie  Councils  of 
Seleucia  and  Arinunum,  the  Eusebians  had  skilfully 
gained  two  important   objects,  by   means   of  unim- 
portant concessions   on   their  part.     They  had  sac- 
rificed  Aetius   and  his   Anomaon;    and  effected   in 
exchange  the  disgrace  of  the  Semi-Arians  as  well  as 
of  the  Catholics,  and  the  establishment  of  the  Homa'oii, 
the  truly  characteristic  symbol  of  a  party,  who,  as 
caring  little  for  the  sense  of  Scripture,  found  an  ex- 
cuse and  an  indulgence  of  their  unconcern,  in  a  pre- 
tended maintenance  of  the  letter.    As  to  the  wretched 
mountebank  just  mentioned,  whose  profaneness  was  so 
abominable,  as  to  obtain   for  him   the   title   of  the 
**  Atljeist,"  lie  was  formally  condemned  in  the  Council 
at  Constantinople  (A.D.  360)  already  mentioned,   in 
which  the  Semi-Arian  Basil,  Macedonius,  and  their 
associates  had  been  deposed.     During  the  discussions 
which  attended  it,  Eleusius,  one  of  the  latter  party, 
laid  before  tlie  Emperor  an  Anomcean  creed,  which 
he  ascribed  to  Eudoxius.    The  latter,  when  questioned, 
disowned  it ;  and  named  Aetius  as  its  author,  who  was 
immediately  summoned.    Introduced  into  the  Imperial 
presence,  he  was  unable   to  divine,  in   spite  of  his 
natural  acuteness,  whether  the  Emperor  was  pleased 
or  displeased  with  the  composition  ;  and,  hazarding 
an  acknowledgement  of  it,  he  drew  down  on  himself 
the  full  indignation  of  Constantius,  who  banished  him 
into   Cilicia,   and    obliged   his    patron   Eudoxius   to 
anathematize  both  the  confession  in  question,  and  all 
the  positions  of  the  pure  Arian  heresy.     Such  was 
the  fall  of  Aetius,  at  the  time  of  the  triumph  of  the 
Eusebians ;  but  soon  afterwards  he  was  promoted  to 
the  episcopate  (under  what  circumstances  is  unknown), 

352  Ttte  A  nomceans.  [chap.  iv. 

and  was  favourably  noticed,  as  a  former  friend  of 
Gallus,  by  the  Emperor  Julian,  who  gave  him  a  terri- 
tory in  the  Island  of  Mitelene. 

Eunomius,  his  disciple,  escaped  the  jealousy  of  Con- 
stantius  through  the  good  offices  of  Eudoxius,  and  was 
advanced  to  the  Bishoprick  of  Cyzicus  ;  but,  being 
impatient  of  dissimulation,  he  soon  fell  into  disgrace, 
and  was  banished.  The  death  of  the  Emperor  took 
place  at  the  end  of  A.D.  361  ;  his  last  acts  evincing  a 
further  approximation  to  the  unmitigated  heresy  of 
Arius.  At  a  Council  held  at  Antioch  in  the  course  of 
that  year,  he  sanctioned  the  Anomcean  doctrine  in  its 
most  revolting  form  ;  and  shortly  before  his  decease, 
received  the  sacrament  of  baptism,  as  has  been  stated 
above,  from  Euzoius,  the  personal  friend  and  original 
associate  of  Arius  himself  8. 

"  [*' At  this  critical  moment  Constantius  died,  when  the  cause  of  truth 
was  only  not  in  the  lowest  state  of  degradation,  because  a  party  was  in 
authority  and  vigour  who  could  reduce  it  to  a  lower  still ;  the  Latins  com- 
mitted to  an  Anti-Catholic  creed,  the  Pope  a  renegade,  Hosius  fallen  and 
dead,  Athanasius  wandering  in  the  deserts,  Arians  in  the  sees  of  Christen- 
dom, and  their  doctrine  growing  in  blasphemy,  and  their  profession  of  it 
in  boldness,  everyday.  The  Emperor  had  come  to  the  throne  when  almost 
a  boy,  and  at  this  time  was  but  forty-four  years  old.  In  the  ordinary 
course  of  things,  he  might  have  reigned  till  orthodoxy,  humanly 
speaking,  was  extinct.''    Ath.  Tr.  vol.  L  p.  121.] 




■fjIE  accession  of  Julian  was  followed  by  a  general 
^'^storation  of  the  banished  Bishops ;    and  all   eyes 
*lnroiighout  Christendom  were  at  once  turned  towards 
-Alexandria,  as  the  Church,  which,  by  its  sufferings 
^nd  its  indomitable  spirit,  had  claim  to  be  the  arbiter 
c>f  doctrine,  and  the  guarantee  of  peace  to  the  Catholic 
\vorld.     Athanasius,   as  the  story  goes,  was,  on  the 
tJeath  of  his  persecutor,  suddenly  found  on  his  episco- 
pal throne  in  one  of  the  Churches  of  Alexandria' ;  a 
legend,  happily  expressive  of  the  unwearied  activity 
and  almost  ubiquity  of  that  extraordinaiy  man,  who, 
■while  a  price  was  set  on  his  head,  mingled  unperceivcd 
in  the  proceedings  at  Scleucia  and  Ariminum^,  and 
directed  the  movements  of  his  fellow-labourers  by  his 

I  Ckve,  Ljfe  orAthin.  x.  g. 
■  [This  ii  douliirul  ;  vide  Montlaucon,  Athan 
iiiblmi  SHin  to  admit  it.] 

oiigh  Tillcmom  a.»l 

354  1^^^^  Council  of  A  lexaiidria.    [chap,  v- 

writings,  when  he  was  debarred  the  exercise  of  his  dex — 
terity  in  debate,  and  his  persuasive  energy  in  private^»  ~( 
conversation.  He  was  soon  joined  by  his  fellow — ^'i^- 
exile,  Eusebius  of  Vercellae  ;  Lucifer,  who  had  jour — — 3*- 
neyed  with  the  latter  from  the  Upper  Thebaid,  on  hi^^  is 
return  to  the  West,  having  gone  forward  to  Antioclr~ -Mlh 
on  business  which  will  presently  be  explained.  Mean —  -m.- 
while,  no  time  was  lost  in  holding  a  Council  a^^^mt 
Alexandria  (A.D.  362)  on  the  general  state  of  th^^  -le 

The  object  of  Julian  in  recalling  the  banishec^^  -d 
Bishops,  was  the  renewal  of  those  dissensions,  b^^  «y 
means  of  toleration,  which  Constantius  had  en^^^-i- 
deavoured  to  terminate  by  force.  He  knew  thes»  -^E3e 
prelates  to  be  of  various  opinions,  Semi-Arian^s  -•s, 
Macedonians,  Anomoeans,  as  well  as  orthodox  ;  ancEn:^  di 
determining  to  be  neuter  himself,  he  waited  with  th-  -^r--ie 
satisfaction  of  an  Eclectic  for  the  event ;  being  pen«:  -r- 
suaded,  that  Christianity  could  not  withstand  th  -^r^ie 
shock  of  parties,  not  less  discordant,  and  far  mor^^g^  r^ 
zealous,  than  the  sects  of  philosophy.  It  is  even  sai^  i  id 
that  he  "invited  to  his  palace  the  leaders  of  the  hostil  -t  -le 
sects,  that  he  might  enjoy  the  agreeable  spectacl  ^  =1^ 
of  their  furious  encounters  3/'  But,  in  indulging  sucl^^^^^ 
anticipations  of  overthrowing  Christianity,  he 
displayed  his  own  ignorance  of  the  foundation  o 
which  it  was  built.  It  could  scarcely  be  conceive 
that  an  unbeliever,  educated  among  heretics,  woul 
understand  the  vigour  and  indestructibility  of  the 
Christian  spirit  ;  and  Julian  fell  into  the  error,  tn^Bto 
which  in  all  ages  men  of  the  world  are  exposed,  c^^^f 
mistaking  whatever  shows  itself  on  thq  surface  of  tl^^     ^^ 

-    '  Gibbon,  ch.  xxiiu 

SECT,  ij      The  Council  of  Alexandria. 


■Apostolic  Community,  its  prominences  and  irrcgn- 
laritics,  all  that  is  extravagant,  and  all  that  is  tran- 
sitory, for  the  real  moving  principle  and  life  of  the 
System.  It  is  trying  times  alone  that  manifest  the 
saints  of  God  ;  but  they  live  notwithstanding,  and 
support  tlie  Church  in  their  generation,  though  they 
remain  in  their  obscurity.  In  the  days  of  Arianism, 
indeed,  they  were  in  their  measure,  revealed  to  the 
World  ;  still  to  such  as  Julian,  they  were  unavoidably 
tinknown.  both  in  respect  to  their  numbers  and  their 
tlivine  gifts.  The  thousand  of  silent  believers,  who 
vw'orshipped  in  spirit  and  in  truth,  were  obscured  by 
tJic  tens  and  twenties  of  the  various  heretical  factions, 
>vhose  clamorous  addresses  besieged  the  Imperial 
Court  ;  and  Athanasius  would  be  portrayed  to 
Julian's  imagination  after  the  picture  of  his  own 
preceptor,  the  time-serving  and  unscrupulous  Euse- 
bius.  The  event  of  his  experiment  refuted  the 
cipinion  which  led  to  it.  The  impartial  toleration  of 
^1  religious  persuasions,  malicious  as  was  its  intent, 
did  but  contribute  to  the  ascendancy  of  the  right  faith; 
that  faith,  which  is  the  only  true  aliment  of  the 
Viuman  mind,  which  can  be  held  as  a  principle  as  well 
as  an  opinion,  and  which  influences  the  heart  to  suffer 
.and  to  labour  for  its  sake. 
W^  .  Of  the  subjects  which  engaged  the  notice  of  the 
^^Klexandrian  Council,  two  only  need  here  be  men- 
^Hponed  ;  the  treatment  to  be  pursued  towards  the 
"bishops,  who  had  arianized  in  the  reign  of  Constan- 
tius,  and  the  settlement  of  the  theological  sense  of 
;the  word  ii}'posiasis.      And  hei-e,  of  the  former  of 

356  The  Cmincil  of  Alexandria.  £chap. 


Instances   have  already  occurred,   of  the  line  o 
conduct     pursued    by    Athanasius    in    ecclesiastica. 
matters.     Deliberate  apostasy  and  systematic  heres] 
were  the  objects  of  his  implacable  opposition  ;  but  ii 
his  behaviour  towards  individuals,  and  in  his  judg-' 
ment  of  the  inconsistent,  whether  in  conduct  or  cree 
he  evinces  an  admirable  tenderness  and  forbearanc< 
Not  only  did  he  reluctantly  abandon  his  associat< 
the  unfortunate  Marcellus,  on  his  sabellianizing,  bur 
he  even  makes  favourable  notice  of  the  Semi-Arian* 
hostile  to  him  both  in  word  and  deed,  who  reject( 
the  orthodox  test,  and  had   confirmed  against  hinr^^Em 

personally  at  Philippopolis,  the  verdict  of  the  com ^- 

mission  at  the  Mareotis.     When  bishops  of  his  owi  ^^" 
party,  as  Liberius  of  Rome,  were  induced  to  excom—    -- 
municate  him,  far  from  resenting  it,  he  speaks  of  their:   -^^ 
with  a  temper  and  candour,  which,  as  displayed  ii 
the  heat  of  controversy,  evidences  an  enlarged  pru- 
dence, to  say  nothing  of  Christian  charity^.     It  is  thi: 
union  of  opposite  excellences,  firmness  with  discrimi- 
nation   and   discretion,   which    is   the  characteristic 
praise  of  Athanasius :  as  well   as   of  several  of  his 
predecessors  in  the  See  of  Alexandria.     The  hundred- 
years,  preceding  his  episcopate,  had  given  scope  ta^ 
the  enlightened  zeal  of  Dionysius,  and  the  patient: 
resoluteness  of  Alexander.     On  the  other  hand,  wheim- 
we  look    around    at    the    other    more    conspicuous 
champions  of  orthodoxy  of  his  time,  much   as  w^ 
must  revere  and  bless  their  memory,  yet  as  regards 

^  Athan.  de  Syn.  41*    Apol.  contr.  Arian.  89.  Hist.  Arian.  ad  Monadt<* 

Sect,  i.]    The  Council  of  A  iexandria.  357 

lhis  maturity  and  completeness  of  character,  they  are. 
far  inferior  to  Athanasius.  The  noble-minded  Hilary 
was  intemperate  in  his  language,  and  assailed  Con- 
stantiuswith  an  asperity  unbecoming  a  dutiful  subject. 
The  fiery  Bishop  of  Cagliari,  exemplary  as  is  his 
self-devotion,  so  openly  showed  his  desire  for  martyr- 
dom, as  to  lead  the  Emperor  to  exercise  towards  him 
a  contemptuous  forbearance.  Eusebius  of  VercellcC 
negotiated  in  the  Councils,  with  a  subtlety  bordering 
on  Arian  insincerity.  From  these  deficiencies  of 
character  Athanasius  was  exempt ;  and  on  the  occa- 
sion which  has  given  rise  to  these  remarks,  he  had 
especial  need  of  the  combination  of  gifts,  which  has 
made  his  name  immortal  in  the  Church. 

The  question  of  the  arianizing  bishops  was  one  of 
much  difficulty.  They  were  in  possession  of  the 
Churches  ;  and  could  not  be  deposed,  if  at  all,  without 
the  risk  of  a  permanent  schism.  It  is  evident,  more- 
over, from  the  foregoing  narrative,  how  many  had  been 
"betrayed  into  an  approval  of  the  Arian  opinions, 
■%vithoiit  understanding  or  acting  upon  them.  This 
'was  particularly  the  case  in  the  West,  where  threats 
and  ill-usage,  had  been  more  or  less  substituted  for 
those  fallacies,  which  the  Latin  language  scarcely 
admitted.  And  even  in  the  remote  Greek  Churches, 
there  was  much  ef  that  devout  and  unsuspecting 
simplicity,  which  was  the  easy  sport  of  the  super- 
cilious sophistry  of  the  Eusebians.  This  was  the  case 
with  the  father  of  Gregory  Nazianzen  ;  who,  being 
persuaded  to  receive  the  Acacian  confession  of  Con- 
stantinople (A.D.  359,  360),  on  the  ground  of  its  un- 
mixed scripturalness,  found  himself  suddenly  deserted 
by  a  large  portion  of  his  flock,  and  was  extricated 

358  Tlie  Ccuncil  of  A  lexandria.    [chap.  V  • 

•from  the  charge  of  heresy,  only  by  the  dexterity  of  hi-^ 
learned   son.     Indeed,   to    many  of  the   Arianizin^§ 
bishops,  may  be  applied  the  remarks,  which  Hilar^^ 
makes  upon  the  laity  subjected  to  Arian  teaching 
that  their  own  piety  enabled  them  to  interpret  ex 
pressions  religiously,  which  were  originally  invented 
evasions  of  the  orthodox  doctrine  5. 

And  even  in   parts  of  the  East,  where  a  muc 
clearer  perception  of  the  difference  between  truth  an 
error  existed,  it  must  have  been  an  extreme  difficulty 
to  such  of  the  orthodox  as  lived  among  Arians,  t 
determine,  in  what  way  best  to   accomplish   duties^ 
which  were  in  opposition  to  each  other.     The  sam< 
obligation  of  Christian  unity,  which  was  the  apolo( 
for  the  laity  who  remained,  as  at  Antioch,  in  com- 
munion with  an  Arian  bishop,  would  lead  to  a  similai 
recognition  of  his  authority  by  clergy  or  bishops  wh( 
were  ecclesiastically  subordinate  to  him.     Thus  CyriE     1 
of  Jerusalem,  who  was  in  no  sense  either  Anomoearc: — i 
or  Eusebian,  received  consecration  from  the  hands  oi 
his  metropolitan  Acacius ;  and  St.  Basil,  sumam( 
the   Great,    the    vigorous    champion   of    orthodox) — ^ 
against  the  Emperor  Valens,  attended  the  Council  ol 
Constantinople  (A.D.   359,  360),  as  a  deacon,  in  th< 
train  of  his  namesake  Basil,  the  leader  of  the  Semi — 

On  the  other  hand,  it  was  scarcely  safe  to  leave  ther 
deliberate  heretic  in  possession  of  his  spiritual  power- 
Many  bishops  too  were  but  the  creatures  of  the  times, 
raised  up  from  the  lowest  of  the  people,  and  deficient: 
in    the    elementary   qualifications    of   learning   and 

*  "  Sanctiores  sunt  aures  plebis,"  he  says,  "  qu2i.m  corda  saccrdotum.*^ 
Bull,  Defens.  epilog.     [Vide  infr.  Appendix,  No  5.] 

SKCT.  I.]     T//C  Council  af  Alexandria.  359 

sobriety.  Even  those,  who  had  but  conceded  to  the 
violence  of  others,  were  the  objects  of  a  just  suspicion; 
since,  frankly  as  they  now  joined  the  Athanasians, 
they  had  already  shown  as  much  interest  and  reliance 
in  the  opposite  party. 

Swayed  by  these  latter  considerations,  some  of  the 
assembled  prelates  advocated  the  adoption  of  harsh 
measures  towards  the  Arianizers,  considering  that 
their  deposition  was  due  both  to  the  injured  dignity 
and  to  the  safety  of  the  Catholic  Church.  Athanasius, 
however,  proposed  a  more  temperate  policy;  and  his 
influence  was  sufficient  to  triumph  over  the  excitement 
of  mind  which  commonly  accompanies  a  deliverance 
from  persecution.  A  decree  was  passed,  that  such 
bishops  as  had  communicated  with  the  Arians  through 
weakness  or  surprise,  should  be  recognized  in  their 
respective  sees,  on  their  signing  the  Nicene  formulary; 
but  that  those,  who  had  publicly  defended  the  heresy, 
should  only  be  admitted  to  lay-communion.  No  act 
could  evincemoreclearly  than  this,  that  it  was  no  party 
interest,  but  the  ascendancy  of  the  orthodox  doctrine 
itself,  whicli  was  the  aim  of  the  Athanasians.  They 
allowed  the  power  of  the  Church  to  remain  in  the 
hands  of  men  indifferent  to  the  interests  of  themselves, 
on  their  return  to  that  faith,  which  they  had  denied 
through  fear ;  and  their  ability  to  force  on  the  Arian- 
izers this  condition,  evidences  what  they  might  have 
done,  had  they  chosen  to  make  an  appeal  against  the 
more  culpable  of  them  to  the  clergy  and  laity  of  their 
respective  churches,  and  to  create  and  send  out  bishops 
to  supply  their  places.  But  they  desired  peace,  as 
soon  as  the  interests  of  truth  were  secured  ;  and  their 
magnanimous   decision    was    forthwith    adopted    by 


360  The  Council  of  Alexandria,     [chap.  v.     •^ 

Councils  held  at  Rome,  in  Spain,  Gaul,  and  Achaia.  •-:. 

;  The  state  of  Asia  was  less  satisfactory.    As  to  Antioch,  ,^_ ., 

its  fortunes  will  immediately  engage  our  attention.  ^. 

'Phrygia  and  the  Proconsulate  were  in  the  hands  of  the  ^s 

Semi-Arians  and  Macedonians  ;  Thrace  and  Bithynia,  ,,^ 

controlled    by  the    Imperial    Metropolis,  were    the  -^ 
stronghold  of  the  Eusebian  or  Court  faction. 


i  2. 

The  history  of  the  Church  of  Antioch  affords  an  ^^ 
illustration  of  the  general  disorders  of  the  East  at  this  -^ 
period,  and  of  the  intention  of  the  sanative  measure  -^s 
i  passed  at  Alexandria  respecting  them.  Eustathius,  ,^:, 
its  Bishop,  one  of  the  principal  Nicene  champions,  had  -K 
been  an  early  victim  of  Eusebian  malice,  being 
deposed  on  calumnious  charges,  A.D,  331.  A  series 
of  Arian  prelates  succeeded  ;  some  of  whom,  Stephen, 
Leontius,  and  Eudoxius,  have  been  commemorated  in 
the  foregoing  pages  6.  The  Catholics  of  Antioch  had 
disagreed  among  themselves,  how  to  act  under  these 
circumstances.  Some,  both  clergy  and  laity,  refusing 
the  communion  of  heretical  teachers,  had  holden 
together  for  the  time,  as  a  distinct  body,  till  the  cause 
of  truth  should  regain  its  natural  supremacy ;  while 
others  had  admitted  the  usurping  succession,  which 
the  Imperial  will  forced  upon  the  Church.  When 
Athanasius  passed  through  Antioch  on  his  return  from 
his  second  exile  (A.D.  348),  he  had  acknowledged  the 
seceders,  from  a  respect  for  their  orthodoxy,  and  for 
the  rights  of  clergy  and  laity  in  the  election  of  a 
bishop.  Yet  it  cannot  be  denied,  that  men  of  zeal 
and  boldness  were  found  among  those  who  remained 

•  Vide  supra,  p.  280. 

Sect,  i.]     The  Council  of  Alexandria. 

in  the  Iieretical  communion.  Two  laymen,  Flavian 
and  Diodorus,  protested  with  spirit  against  the  hetero- 
doxy of  the  crafty  Leontius,  and  kept  alive  an  ortho- 
dox party  in  the  midst  of  the  Eusebians. 

On  the  translation  of  Eudoxius  to  Constantinople, 
the  year  before  the  death  of  Constantius,  ^n  accident 
occurred,  which,  skilfully  improved,  might  have  healed 
the  incipient  schism  among  the  Trinitarian:;.    .Scarcely 
liad  Meletius,  the  new  Bishop  of  the  Eiisebian  party, 
taken  possession  of  his  see,  when  he  conformed  to  the 
Catholic  faith.     History  describes  him  as  gifted  with 
remarkable  sweetness  and  benevolence  of  di.sposition. 
!Men  thus  characterized  are  often  deficient  in  sensi- 
bility, in  their  practical  judgment  of  heresy  ;  which 
they  abhor  indeed  in  the  abstract,  yet  countenance  in 
the  case  of  their  friends,  from  a  false  charitab'eness  ; 
■which  leads  them,  not  merely  to  hope  thn  ocst,  but  to 
overlook  the  guilt  of  opposing  the  trulii,  where  the 
fact  is  undeniable.     Meletius  had  been  brought  up  ;"n 
the  communion  of  the  Eusebians  ;  a  misfortune,  in 
whicli  nearly  all  the  Oriental   Christians  of  his  day 
were  involved.    Being  considered  as  one  of  their  party, 
he  had  been  promoted  by  them  to  the  see  of  Sebaste, 
in  Armenia  ;  but,  taking  oft'ence  at  the  conduct  of  his 
flock,  he  had  retired  to  Bercea,  in  Syria.     During  the 
residence   of  the   Court   at   Antioch,   A.D.   361,   the 
election  of  the  new  prelate  of  that  see  came  on  ;  and 
the  choice  of  both  Ariaiis  and  Arianizing  orthodox 
fell  on  Meletius.     Acacius  was  the  chief  mover  in  this 
business.     He  had  lately^  succeeded  in  establishing 
the  principle  of  liberalism  at  Constantinople,  where  a 
^Kdemnation  had  been  passed  on  tJie  use  of  words 

^B  I  Vidt  supra,  pp.  3+7,  .i;o. 

362  The  Council  of  Alexandria,    [chap.  v. 

not  found  in  Scripture,  in  confessions  of  faith  ;  and  he 
could  scarcely  have  selected  a  more  suitable  instru- 
ment, as  it  appeared,  of  extending  its  influence,  than  a 
prelate,  who  united  purity  of  life  and  amiableness 
of  temper,  to  a  seeming  indifference  to  the  distinctions 
between  doctrinal  truth  and  error. 

On  the  new  Patriarch's  arrival  at  Antioch,  he  was 
escorted  by  the  court  bishops,  and  his  own  clergy  and 
laity,  to  the  cathedral.  Desirous  of  solemnizing  the 
occasion,  the  Emperor  himself  had  condescended  to 
give  the  text,  on  which  the  assembled  prelates  were  to 
comment.  It  was  the  celebrated  passage  from  the 
Proverbs,  in  which  Origen  has  piously  detected,  and 
the  Arians  perversely  stifled,  the  great  article  of  our 
faith ;  "  the  Lord  hath  created  [possessed]  Me  in  the 
beginning  of  His  ways,  before  His  works  of  old." 
George  of  Laodicea,  who,  on  the  departure  of  Eudoxius 
from  Antioch,  had  left  the  Semi-Arians  and  rejoined 
the  Eusebians,  opened  the  discussion  with  a  dogmatic 
explanation  of  the  words.  Acacius  followed  with  that 
ambiguity  of  language,  which  was  the  characteristic  of 
his  school.  At  length  the  new  Patriarch  arose,  and  to 
the  surprise  of  the  assembly,  with  a  subdued  manner, 
and  in  measured  words,  avoiding  indeed  the  Nicene 
Homoilsion,  but  accurately  fixing  the  meaning  of  his 
expressions,  confessed  the  true  Catholic  tenet,  so  long 
exiled  from  the  throne  and  altars  of  Antioch.  A 
scene  followed,  such  as  might  be  expected  from  the 
excitable  temper  of  the  Orientals.  The  congregation 
received  his  discourse  with  shouts  of  joy ;  while  the 
Arian  archdeacon  of  the  church  running  up,  placed  his 
hand  before  his  mouth  to  prevent  his  speaking  ;  on 
which  Meletius  thrust  out  his  hand  in  sight  of  the 

^HcT.  I.]      The  Coiincil  of  Alexandria.  363 

people,  and  raising  first  three  fingers,  and  then  one, 
symboHzcd  the  great  truth  which  he  ivns  unable  to 
utterS.  The  consequences  of  this  bold  confession 
might  be  expected.  Meletiiis  was  banished,  and  a 
fresh  Bishop  appointed,  Euzoius,  the  friend  of  Arius, 
But  an  important  advantage  resulted  to  the  orthodox 
cause  by  this  occurrence  ;  Catholics  and  heretics  were 
no  longer  united  in  one  communion,  the  latter  being 
thrown  into  the  position  of  schismatics,  who  had 
rejected  their  own  bishop.  Such  was  the  state  of 
things,  when  the  death  of  Constantius  occasioned  the 
j-etum  of  Meletius,  and  the  convocation  of  the  Council 
of  Alexandria,  in  which  his  case  was  considered. 

The  course  to  be  pursued  in  this  matter  by  the 
general  Church  was  evident.      There  were   now   in 
^ntioch,  besides  the  heretical  party,  two  communions 
jirofessing  orthodoxy,  of  which  what  may  be  called 
■*he  Protestant  body  was  without  a  head,  Eustathius 
laving  died  some  years  before.    It  was  the  obvious 
^uty  of  the  Council,  to  recommend  the  Eustathians 
to  recognize  Meletius,  and  to  join  in  his  communion, 
^vhatever  original   intrusion   there   might  be   in   the 
«piscopal  succession  from  which  he  received  his  Orders, 
and  whatever  might  have  been  his  own  previous  errors 
of  doctrine.     The   general   principle   of  restoration, 
which  they  had  made  the  rule  of  their  conduct  towards 
the  Arianizers,  !ed  them  to  this.     Accordingly,  a  com- 
mission was  appointed  to  proceed  to  Antioch,  and  to 
exert  their  endeavours  to  bring  the  dissension  to  a 
happy  termination. 

'  Their   charitable    intentions,    however,    had    been 
ready  f™5trated  by  the  unfortunate  interference  of 


64  Tlie  Couiuil  of  Alexandria,    [chap.  v. 

Lucifer.  This  Latin  Bishop,  strenuous  in  contending 
for  the  faith,  had  little  of  the  knowledge  of  human 
nature,  or  of  the  dexterity  in  negotiation,  necessary 
for  the  management  of  so  delicate  a  point  as  that 
which  he  had  taken  upon  himself  to  settle.  He  had 
gone  straight  to  Antioch,  when  Eusebius  of  Vercella 
proceeded  to  Alexandria  ;  and,  on  the  Alexandrian 
commission  arriving  at  the  former  city,  the  mischief 
was  done,  and  the  mediation  ineffectual.  Indulging, 
instead  of  overcoming,  the  natural  reluctance  of  the 
Eustathians  to  submit  to  Meletius,  Lucifer  had  been 
induced,  with  the  assistance  of  two  others,  to  conse- 
crate a  separate  head  for  their  communion,  and  by  so 
doing  re-animate  a  dissension,  which  had  run  its 
course  and  was  dying  of  itself.  The  result  of  this 
indiscretion  was  the  rise  of  an  additional,  instead  of 
the  termination  of  the  existing  schism.  Eusebius, 
who  was  at  the  head  of  the  commission,  retired  from 
Antioch  in  disgust.  Lucifer,  offended  at  becoming 
the  object  of  censure,  separated  first  from  Eusebius, 
and  at  length  from  all  who  acknowledged  the  conform- 
ing Arianizers.  He  founded  a  sect,  which  was  called 
after  his  name,  and  lasted  about  fifty  years. 

As  to  the  schism  at  Antioch,  it  was  not  terminated 
till  the  time  of  Chrysostom  about  the  end  of  the 
century.  Athanasius  and  the  Egyptian  Churches 
continued  in  communion  with  the  Eustathians. 
Much  as  they  had  desired  and  exerted  themselves 
for  a  reconciliation  between  the  parties,  they  could 
not  but  recognize,  while  it  existed,  that  body  which 
had  all  along  suffered  and  laboured  with  themselves. 
And  certainly  the  intercourse,  which  Meletius  held 
with  the  unprincipled  Acacius,   in  the  Antiochene 

SECT.  T.]     The  Council  of  Alexandria. 


UTouncil  the  followiiig  year,  and  his  refusal  to  c 
nicate  with  Athanasius,  were  not  adapted  to  make 
them  repent  their  determination^.  The  Occidentals 
snd  the  Churches  of  Cyprus  followed  their  example. 
The  Eastern  Christians,  on  the  contrary,  having  for 
the  most  part  themselves  arianized,  took  part  with 
the  Meletians.  At  length  St.  Chrysostom  successfully 
exerted  his  influence  with  the  Egyptian  and  Western 
Catholics  in  behalf  of  Flavian,  the  successor  of  Me!e- 
tius  ;  a  prelate,  it  must  be  admitted,  not  blameless  in 
the  ecclesiastical  quarrel,  though  he  had  acted  a  bold 
part  with  Diodorus,  afterwards  Bishop  of  Tarsus,  in 
resisting  the  insidious  attempts  of  Leontius  to  secu- 
larize the  Church. 

The  Council  of  Alexandria  was  also  concerned  in 
determining  a  doctrinal  question ;  and  here  too  it 
exercised  a  virtual  mediation  between  the  rival  parties 
in  the  Antiochene  Church. 

The  word  Person  which  we  venture  to  use  in  speak- 
ing of  those  three  distinct  and  real  modes  in  which  it 
has  pleased  Almighty  God  to  reveal  to  us  His  being, 
is  in  its  philosophical  sense  too  wide  for  our  meaning. 
Its  essential  signification,  as  applied  to  ourselves,  is 
that  of  an  individual  intelligent  agent,  answering  to 
the  Greek  hypostasis,  or  reality.  On  tiie  other  hand,  if 
we  restrict  it  to  its  etymological  sense  oi  persona  or 
prosopoH,  that  is  character,  it  evidently  means  less  than 
the  Scripture  doctrine,  which  we  wish  to  define  by 

*  \n<.  S.  Ba^il,  p.  cix,  cd.  Benedict.  [Basil  ai  lengtli  succcciied  in 
Tcconciling  Mclctius  to  Aihanasius.  Viti.  Btriedicll.  S.  Alhaii:i^ii,  p. 
UiLvi',  and  S,  B^ilii.  p.  cli.j 

366  TJie  Cotmcil  of  Alexandria,    [chap,  v/ 

means  of  it,  as  denoting  merely  certain  outward  mani- 
festations of  the  Supreme  Being  relatively  to  ourselves, 
which  are  of  an  accidental  and  variable  nature.  The^^^  e 
statements  of  Revelation  then  lie  between  thesers=^e 
antagonistic  senses  in  which  the  doctrine  of  the  Holy^"^^^ 

Trinity  may  be  erroneously  conceived,  between  Tri 

theism,  and  what  is  popularly  called  Unitarianism. 

In  the  choice  of  difficulties,  then,  between  words -^^s 
which  say  too  much  and  too  little,  the  Latins,  looking— ^^^ 
at  the  popular  and  practical  side  of  the  doctrine,, 
selected  the  term  which  properly  belonged  to  th< 
external  and  defective  notion  of  the  Son  and  Spirit, 
and  called  Them  Personae,  or  Characters ;  with  no 
intention,  however,  of  infringing  on  the  doctrine  ol 
their  completeness  and  reality,  as  distinct  from  the 
Father,  but  aiming  at  the  whole  truth,  as  nearly  as 
their  language  would  permit.  The  Greeks,  on  the 
other  hand,  with  their  instinctive  anxiety  for  philoso- 
phical accuracy  of  expression,  secured  the  notion  oi 
Their  existence  in  Themselves,  by  calling  them 
Hypostases  or  Realities ;  for  which  they  considered, 
with  some  reason,  that  they  had  the  sanction  of  the 
Apostle  in  his  Epistle  to  the  Hebrews.  Moreover, 
they  were  led  to  insist  upon  this  internal  view  of  the 
doctrine,  by  the  prevalence  of  Sabellianism  in  the 
East  in  the  third  century ;  a  heresy,  which  professed 
to  resolve  the  distinction  of  the  Three  Persons,  into  a 
mere  distinction  of  character.  Hence  the  prominence 
given  to  the  Three  Hypostases  or  Realities,  in  the 
creeds  of  the  Semi-Arians  (for  instance,  Lucian*s  and 
Basil's,  A.D.  341 — 358),  who  were  the  especial  antago- 
nists of  Sabellius,  Marcellus,  Photinus,  and  kindred 
heretics.*    It  was  this  praiseworthy  jealousy  of  Sabcl- 

The  Couiuil  of  Akxasidria.  367 

ianism,  which  led  the  Greeks  to  lay  stress  upon  the 
ioctrine  of  the  Hypostatic  li'arJ'  (the  Word  in  real 
existence),  lest  the  bare  use  of  the  terms.  Word. 
Voice,  Power,  Wisdom,  and  Radiance,  in  designating 
:iur  Lord,  should  lead  to  a  forgetfulncss  of  His 
Personality,  At  the  same  time,  the  word  tisia  fsii^- 
staiice)  was  adopted  by  them,  to  express  the  simple 
individuality  of  the  Divine  Nature,  to  which  the 
Greeks,  as  scrupulously  as  the  Latins,  referred  the 
separate  Personalities  of  the  Son  and  Spirit. 

Thus  the  two  great  divisions  of  Christendom  rested 
satisfied  each  with  its  own  theology,  agreeing  in  doc- 
trine, though  differing  in  the  expression  of  it  But, 
when  th«  course  of  the  detestable  controversy,  whtcli 
Alius  had  raised,  introduced  the  Latins  to  the  phrase- 
ology of  the  Greeks,  accustomed  to  the  word  Persona, 
they  were  startled  at  the  doctrine  of  the  three  Hypos- 
tases ;  a  term  which  tliey  could  not  translate  except 
by  the  word  substance,  and  tlierefore  considered 
synonymous  with  the  Greek  usia,  and  which,  in 
matter  of  fact,  had  led  to  Arianism  on  the  one  hand, 
and  Tritheism  on  the  other.  And  the  Orientals,  on 
their  part,  were  suspicious  of  the  Latin  maintenance 
of  the  One  Hypostasis,  and  Three  Persona; ;  as  if 
such  a  formula  tended  to  Sabellianism'. 

This  is  but  a  general  account  of  the  difference 
between  the  Eastern  and  Western  theology  ;  for  it  is 
difficult  to  ascertain,  when  the  language  of  tlie  Greeks 
first  became  fixed  and  consistent.  Some  eminent 
critics  have  considered,  that  nsia  was  not  discriminated 
from  hypostasis,  till  the  Council  which  has  given  rise  to 

[Aoyov  (nurooraTO*.     Vide  sujir.  ji.  171,] 

-     im  and  Ilupmluu,.  .,J.  .Ij^ik;,,,!!.,  No.  ^1 


368  The  Cotincil  of  A  lexajtdria,    |_cn ap. 

these  remarks.  Others  maintain,  that  the  distinctionr" 
between  them  is  recognized  in  the  "substance  or^ 
hypostasis 3"  of  the   Nicene   Anathema;   and   theses 

certainly  have  the  authority  of  St.  Basil  on  their  side^ 

Without  attempting  an  opinion  on  a  point,  obscure  in_ 
itself,  and  not  of  chief  importance  in  the  controversy, 
the  existing  difference  between  the  Greeks  and  Latins,, 
at  the  times  of  the  Alexandrian  Council,  shall  be  herer 

At  this  date,  the  formula  of  the  Three  Hypostases 
seems,  as  a  matter  of  fact,  to  have  been  more  or  less  a^ 
characteristic  of  the  Arians.     At  the  same  time,  it  was 
held  by  the  orthodox  of  Asia,  who  had  communicated 
with  them  ;  that  is,  interpreted  by  them,  of  course,  in. 
the  orthodox  sense  which  it  now  bears.     This  wilL 
account  for  St.   Basil's  explanation  of  the   Nicene^ 
Anathema ;  it  being  natural  in  an  Asiatic  Christian,, 
who  seems  (unavoidably)  to  have  arianized^  for  the- 
first   thirty  years  of  his   life,   to   imagine   (whether 
rightly  or  not)  that  he  perceived  in  it  the  distinction 
between   Usia  and  Hypostasis^  which  he  himself  had 
been  accustomed  to  recognize.     Again,  in  the  schism 
at  Antioch,  which  has  been  above  narrated,  the  party 
of  Meletius,  which  had  so  long  arianized,  maintained 
the  Three  Hypostases,  in  opposition  to  the   Eusta- 
thians,  who,  as  a  body,  agreed  with  the  Latins,  and 
had  in  consequence  been  accused  by  the  Arians  of 
Sabellianism.       Moreover,    this    connexion     of    the 
Oriental    orthodox    with    the    Semi -Arians,    partly 

€^  ovctas  y]  v7ro(rT(ur€<t)s. 

*  Vid.  Petav.  TheoL  Dogm.  torn.  li.  lib.  iv.     Bull,  Defens.  Fid.  Nic  U« 
9,  §  II. 

*  i.  e.  Semi-Arianized. 


■**^counts  for  some  apparent  tritheisms  of  the  former ; 
*^  lieresy  into  which  the  latter  certainly  did  fall^. 

Athanasius,  on  the  other  hand,  without  caring  to  be 
•-*  tliform  in  his  use  of  terms,  about  which  the  orthodox 
differed,  favours  the  Latin  usage,  speaking  of  the 
S-upreme  Being  as  one  Hypostasis,  i.  e.  substance. 
-^\.nd  in  this  he  differed  from  the  previous  writers  of 
llis  own  Church;  who,  not  having  experience  of  the 
X^atin  theology,  nor  of  the  perversions  of  Arianism, 
*».dopt,  not  only  the  word  hypostasis  but  (what  is 
stronger)  the  words  "nature"  and  "substance"  to 
<3enotc  the  separate  Personalities  of  the  Son  and 

As  to  the  Latins,  it  is  said  that,  when  Hosius  came 
to  Alexandria  before  the  Niccne  Council,  he  was  de- 
sirous that  some  explanation  should  be  made  about 
the  Hypostasis;  though  nothing  was  settled  in  con- 
sequence. But,  soon  after  the  Council  of  Sardica,  an 
_^ddition  was  made  to  its  confession,  which  in  Theo- 
ioret  runs  as  follows  :  "  Whereas  the  heretics  maintain 
Siat  the  Hypostases  of  Father,  Son,  and  Holy  Ghost, 
F^re  distinct  and  separate,  we  declare  that  according  to 
the  Catholic  faith  there  is  but  one  Hypostasis  (which 
they  call  Usia)  of  the  Three ;  and  the  Hypostasis  of 
the  Son  is  the  same  as  the  Father's^." 

BSuch  was  the  state  of  the  controversy,  if  it  may  so 
'  Pclav.  i.  fin.  \i.  (3,  §  3.  The  illusnalion  of  three  men,  a?  being 
derlhesamc  nature  (which  is  the  ground  of  ihc  accusation  which  siimc 
*titen  have  brought  against  Gregocy  Nysscn  aad  olhets,  vid.  Cudw.  iv. 
36,  p,  597,601,  &C.  Petav.  iv.  7.  and  10.  Gibbon,  ch.  iii.),  was  but  an 
Hlasuation  of  a  paiiJculac  paint  in  the  doctrine,  and  directed  against  It;u 
frfpourwnj!  of  the  Arians.  It  is  no  eviJcncc  of  irithcism.  Vid.  Pti-.v. 
'.  tj,  SC— iG;  andlom.  i.ii,  4. 
*Theod.His(.ii.  8. 



370  The  Council  of  Alexandria,    [chap,  v^ 

be  called,  at  the  time  of  the  Alexandrian  Council ;  ther 
Church  of  Antioch  being,  as  it  were,  the  stage,  upon 
which  the  two  parties  in  dispute  were  represented,  the 
Meletians  siding  with  the  orthodox  of  the  East,  and  the 
Eustathians  with  those  of  the  West  The  Council, 
however,  instead  of  taking  part  with  either,  determined, 
in  accordance  with  the  writings  of  Athanasius  himself, 
that,  since  the  question  merely  related  to  the  usage  of 
words,  it  was  expedient  to  allow  Christians  to  under- 
stand the  '^hypostasis''  in  one  or  other  sense  indif- 
ferently. The  document  which  conveys  its  decision, 
informs  us  of  the  grounds  of  it.  "If  any  propose  to 
make  additions  to  the  Creed  of  Nicaea,  (says  the 
Synodal  letter,)  stop  such  persons  and  rather  persuade 
them  to  pursue  peace  ;  for  we  ascribe  such  conduct  to 
nothing  short  of  a  love  of  controversy.  Offence 
having  been  given  by  a  declaration  on  the  part  of 
certain  persons,  that  there  are  Three  Hypostases^  and 
it  having  been  urged  that  this  language  is  not  scrip- 
tural, and  for  that  reason  suspicious,  we  desired  that 
the  inquiry  might  not  be  pushed  beyond  the  Nicene 
Confession.  At  the  same  time,  because  of  this  spirit 
of  controversy,  we  questioned  them,  whether  they 
spoke,  as  the  Arians,  of  Hypostases  foreign  and  dis- 
similar to  each  other,  and  diverse  in  substance,  each 
independent  and  separate  in  itself,  as  in  the  case  of 
individual  creatures,  or  the  offspring  of  man,  or,  as 
different  substances,  gold,  silver,  or  brass ;  or,  again, 
as  other  heretics  hold,  of  Three  Origins,  and  Three 
Gods.  In  answer,  they  solemnly  assured  us,  that  they 
neither  said  nor  had  imagined  any  such  thing.  On 
our  inquiring,  *  In  what  sense  then  do  you  say  this,  or 
why  do  you  use  such  expressions  at  all  ? '  they  an* 

■.'t.  j     The  Council  of  Alexandria, 


:d,  'Because  we  believe  in  the  Holy  Trinity,  not  as 
a  Trinity  in  name  only,  but  in  truth  and  reality^.  We 
acknowledge  the  Father  truly  and  in  real  subsistence, 
and  the  Son  truly  in  substance,  and  subsistent,  and 
the  Holy  Ghost  subsisting  and  existing^.'  They  said 
too,  that  they  had  not  spoken  of  Three  Gods,  or  Three 
Origins,  nor  would  tolerate  that  statement  or  notion  ; 
but  acknowledged  a  Holy  Trinity  indeed,  but  only 
One  Godhead,  and  One  Origin,  and  the  Son  consub- 
stantial  with  the  Father,  as  the  Council  declared,  and 
the  Holy  Spirit,  not  a  creature,  nor  foreign,  but  proper 
to  and  indivisible  from,  the  substance  of  the  Son  and 
the  Father. 

"  Satisfied  with  this  explanation  of  the  expressions 
in  question,  and  the  reasons  for  their  use,  we  next  ex- 
amined the  other  party,  who  were  accused  by  the 
above-mentioned  as  holding  but  One  Hypostasis, 
whether  their  teaching  coincided  with  that  of  the 
Sabellians,  in  destroying  the  substance  of  the  Son  and 
the  subsistence  of  the  Holy  Spirit.  They  were  as 
earnest  as  the  otJiers  could  be,  in  denying  both  the 
statement  and  thought  of  such  a  doctrine  ;  'but  wc 
use  Hypostasis'  (subsistence),  they  said,  'considering  it 
means  the  same  as  Usia  (substance),  and  we  hold  that 
there  is  but  one,  because  the  Son  is  from  the  Usia 
(substance)  of  the  Father,  and  because  of  the  identity 
of  Their  nature ;  for  we  believe,  as  in  One  Godhead, 
so  in  One  Divine  Nature,  and  not  that  the  Father's  is 
one,  and  that  the  Son's  is  foreign,  and  the  Holy 
Ghost's  also.'     It  appeared  then,  that  both  those,  who 

I  Ulitr^a 'Ayujv 

372  Tke  Council  of  Alexandria.    [iMtAi? 

were  accused  of  holding  three  Hypostases,  agreed  v 
the  other  party,  and  those,  who  spoke  of  one  Substanc 
professed  the  doctrine  of  the  former  in  the  sense-  c 
their  interpretation  ;  by  both  was  Ariys  anatliematizet 
as  an  enemy  of  Christ,  Sabellius  and  Paulus  of  Samo- 
sata  as  impious,  Valentinus  and  Basilides  as  strangers 
to  the  truth, 'Manicha:us,  as  an  originator  of  evil  doc- 
trines. And,  after  these  explanations,  all,  by  God's 
grace,  unanimously  agree,  that  such  expressions  were 
not  so  desirable  or  accurate  as  the  Nicene  Creed ,  the  j 
words  of  which  they  promised  for  tlie  future  to  a 
esce  in  and  to  use'." 

Plain  as  was  this  statement,  and  natural  as  the  d 
cision  resulting  from  it,  yet  It  could  scarcely  befl 
pected  to  find  acceptance  in  a  city,  where  i 
events  had  increased  dissensions  of  long  standln 
In  providing  the  injured  and  zealous  Eiistathinns  wf' 
an  ecclesiastical  head,  Lucifer  had,  under  existing  C» 
cumstances,  administered  a  stimulant  to  tlic  throbbil^ 
and  festerings  o!"  the  baser  passions  of  human  natn* 
— passions,  which  it  requires  the  strong  exertion  ' 
Christian  magnanimity  and  charity  to  ovcrcom* 
The  Mcletians,  on  the  other  hand,  recognized  as  dHj 
were  by  the  Oriental  Church  as  a  legitimate  brandiS 
itself,  were  in  tlic  position  of  an  establishment,  and* 
exposed  to  the  temptation  of  disdaining  those  who 
the  surrounding  Churches  considered  as  sdiisman* 
How  far  each  party  was  in  fault,  we  arc  not  able  I 
determine;  but  blame  lay  somewhere,  for  the  contfl 
vcr^y  about  the  Hypostasis,  verbal  as  it  was,  b 
the  watchword  of  the  quarrel  between  the  two  p 
and  only  ended,  when  the  Eustatliians  were  ( 
absorbed  by  the  larger  and  more  powerful  body. 
'  Aiban  Toai.  sd  Aoliocb,  5  ani  t. 




second  Ecumenical  Council  was  held  at  Constan- 
le,  A.D.  381 — 383.     It  is  celebrated  in  the  history- 
theology  for  its  condemnation  of  the  Macedonians, 
10,  separating  the  Holy  Spirit  from  the  unity  of  the 
ither  and  Son,  implied  or  inferred  that  He  was  a 
creature.     A  brief  account  of  it  is  here  added  in  its 
ecclesiastical  aspect ;  the  doctrine  itself,  to  which  it 
formally  bore  witness,  having  been  incidentally  dis- 
cussed in  the  second  Chapter  of  this  Volume. 

Eight  years  before  the  date  of  this  Council,  Athana- 
sius  had  been  taken  to  his  rest.  After  a  life  of  contest, 
spite  of  the  hardships  he  encountered, 
'ond  the  age  of  seventy  years,  he  fell  asleep  in 
iceable  possession  of  the  Churches,  for  which  he  had 
suffered.  The  Council  of  Alexandria  was  scarcely 
concluded,  when  he  was  denounced  by  Julian,  and 
saved  his  Ufe  by  flight  or  concealment  Returning  on 
Jovian's  accession,  he  was,  for  a  fifth  and  last  time, 
forced  to  retreat  before  the  ministers  of  his  Arian 
successor  Vale ns ;  and  for  four  months  lay  hid  in  his 
'a  sepulchre.  On  a  representation  being  made 
the  new  Emperor,  even  with  the  consent  of  the 

^HKjrond  tl 

3  74       ^^^  Council  of  Constantinople,  [chap,  v, 

Arians  themselves,  he  was  finally  restored  ;  and  so  i 
happened,  through  the  good  Providence  of  God,  tha 

the  fury  of  persecution,  heavily  as  it  threatened  in  hij 
last  years,  yet  was  suspended  till  his  death,  when  it  a1 

once  burst  forth  upon  the  Church  with  renewed  vigour. " 

Thus  he  was  permitted  to  muse  over  his  past  trials,  .^ 
and  his  prospects  for  the  future  ;  to  collect  his  mind 
to  meet  his  God,  gathering  himself  up  with  Jacob  on 
his  bed  of  age,  and  yielding  up  the  ghost  peaceably""*^-^ 
among  his  children.  Yet,  amid  the  decay  of  nature,  ,^^-y 
and  the  visions  of  coming  dissolution,  the  attention  oi 
Athanasius  was  in  no  wise  turned  from  the  active  duties 
of  his  station.  The  vigour  of  his  obedience  to  those 
duties  remained  unabated  ;  one  of  his  last  acts  being 
the  excommunication  of  one  of  the  Dukes  of  Lybia, 
for  irregularity  of  life. 

At  length,  when  the  great  Confessor  was  removed, 
the  Church  sustained  a  loss,  from  which  it  never  re- 
covered. His  resolute  resistance  of  heresy  had  been 
but  one  portion  of  his  services  ;  a  more  excellent  praise 
is  due  to  him,  for  his  charitable  skill  in  binding  to- 
gether his  brethren  in  unity.  The  Church  of  Alexan- 
dria was  the  natural  mediator  between  the  East  and 
West ;  and  Athanasius  had  well  improved  the  ad- 
vantages thus  committed  to  him.  His  judicious 
interposition  in  the  troubles  at  Antioch  has  lately 
been  described  ;  and  the  dissensions  between  his  own 
Church  and  Constantinople,  which  ensued  upon  his 
death,  may  be  taken  to  show  how  much  the  combina- 
tion of  the  Catholics  depended  on  his  silent  authority. 
Theological  subtleties  were  for  ever  starting  into 
existence  among  the  Greek  Christians ;  and  the 
Arian  controversy  had  corrupted  their  spirit,  where  it 

*»R(1   f 

II.]  The  Council  of  Constantinople.        375 

™R(1  failed  to  impair  their  orthodoxy.     Disputation 
"^Vas  the  rule  of  belief,  and  ambition  of  conduct,  in  the 
l^usebian  school ;  and  these  evil  introductions  out-lived 
its  day.     Patronized  by  the  secular  power,  the  great 
Churches  of  Christendom  conceived  a  jealousy  of  each 
other,  and  gradually  fortified  themselves  in  their  own 
resources.     As  Athanasius  drew  towards  his  end,  the 
task  of  mediation  became  more  difficult.     In  spite  of 
liis   desire  to  keep  aloof  from   party,  circumstances 
threw    him    against   his   will   into   one   of  the   two 
division.'),  which  were  beginning  to  discover  themselves 
in  the  Christian  world.     Even  before  his  time,  traces 
appear  of  a  rivalry  between  the  Asiatic  and  Egyptian 
Churches.      The  events  of  his  own  day,  developing 
their  differences  of  character,  at  the  same  time  con- 
nected t!ie  Egyptians  with  the  Latins.     The  mistakes 
of  his  own  friends  obliged  him  to  side  with  a  seeming 
faction  in  the  body  of  the  Antiochcne  Church ;  and, 
in  the  schism  which  followed,  he  found  himself  in 
opposition  to  the  Catholic  communities  of  Asia  Minor 
and  the  East.      Still,   though  the   course   of  events 
tended  to  ultimate  disruptions  in  the  Catholic  Church, 
his  personal  influence  remained  unimpaired   to   the 
last,  and  enabled   him  to  interpose  with  good  effect 
in  the  affairs  of  the  East.     This  is  well  illustrated  by 
a  letter  addressed  to  him  shortly  before  his  death,  by 
St.  Basil,  who  belonged  to  the  contrary  party,  and  had 
then    recently  been   elevated   to    the    exarchate    of 
C^sarea.     It  shall  be  here  inserted,  and  may  serve  as 
a  sort  of  valediction  in  parting  with  one,  who,  after 
the  Apostles,  has   been   a   principal   instrument,  by 
which  the  sacred  truths  of  Christianity  have  been  con- 
veyed and  secured  to  the  world. 

376        The  Cotmcil  of  Constantinople.  [cHikP.  k 

"  To  Athanasius,  Bishop  of  Alexandria.  The  mort 
the  sicknesses  of  the  Church  increase,  so  much  the 
more  earnestly  do  we  all  turn  towards  thy  Perfection, 
persuaded  that  for  thee  to  lead  us  is  our  sole  remain- 
ing comfort  in  our  difficulties.  By  the  power  of  thy 
prayers,  by  the  wisdom  of  thy  counsels,  thou  art  able 
to  carry  us  through  this  fearful  storm  ;  as  all  are  sure, 
who  have  heard  or  made  trial  of  that  perfection  ever 
so  little.  Wherefore  cease  not  both  to  pray  for  our 
souls,  and  to  stir  us  up  by  thy  letters ;  didst  thou 
know  the  profit  of  these  to  us,  thou  wouldst  never  k^t 
pass  an  opportunity  of  writing  to  us.  For  me,  were  it 
vouchsafed  to  me,  by  the  co-operation  of  thy  prayers, 
once  to  see  thee,  and  to  profit  by  the  gift  lodged  in 
thee,  and  to  add  to  the  history  of  my  life  a  meeting 
with  so  great  and  apostolical  a  soul,  surely  I  should 
consider  myself  to  have  received  from  the  lovin^j 
mercy  of  God  a  compensation  for  all  the  ills,  with 
which  my  life  has  ever  been  afflicted '." 


The  trials  of  the  Church,  spoken  of  by  Basil  in  this 
letter,  were  the  beginnings  of  the  persecution  directed 
against  it  by  the  Emperor  Valens.  This  prince,  who 
succeeded  Jovian  in  the  East,  had  been  baptized  by 
Eudoxius  ;  who,  from  the  time  he  became  possessed  of 
the  Sec  of  Constantinople,  was  the  chief,  and  soon 
became  the  sole,  though  a  powerful,  supf)ort  of  the 
Eusebian  faction.  He  is  said  to  have  bound  Valens 
by  oath,  at  the  time  of  his  baptism,  that  he  would 
establish  Arianism  as  the  state  reliction  of  the  East; 
and  thus  to  have  prolonged   its   ascendancy  for  an 

>  \V\w\.  i:p.  80. 

ii.]   The  Council  of  Constantinople. 

additional  sixteen  years  after  the  death  of  Constan- 
tius  (a.D.  361 — 37S).  At  the  beginning  of  this  period, 
tlie  heretical  party  had  been  weakened  by  the  seces- 
sion of  tlie  Semi-Arians,  who  had  not  merely  left  it, 
but  had  joined  the  Catholics.  This  part  of  the  history 
affords  a  striking  illustration,  not  only  of  the  gradual 
influence  of  truth  over  error,  but  of  the  remarkable 
manner  in  which  Divine  Providence  makes  use  of 
error  itself  as  a  preparation  for  truth ;  that  is,  employ- 
ing the  lighter  forms  of  it  in  sweeping  away  those  of 
a  more  offensive  nature.  Thus  Scmi-Arianism  became 
the  bulwark  and  forerunner  of  the  orthodoxy  which  it 
opposed.  From  A.D.  357,  the  date  of  the  second  and 
virtually  Homcean  formulary  of  Sirmium',  it  had  pro- 
tested against  the  impiety  of  the  genuine  Arians,  In 
the  successive  Councils  of  Ancyra  and  Seleucia,  in  the 
two  following  years,  it  had  condemned  and  deposed 
ihem  ;  and  had  established  the  scarcely  objectionable 
creed  of  Lucian.  On  its  own  subsequent  disgrace  at 
Court,  it  had  concentrated  itself  on  the  Asiatic  side  of 
the  Hellespont ;  while  the  high  character  of  its  leading 

Jiops  for  gravity  and  strictness  of  life,  and  its  influ- 
eover  the  monastic  institutions,  gave  it  a  formidable 

pularity  among  the  lower  classes  on  the  opposite 

ist  of  Thrace. 
ESix  years  after  the  Council  of  Seleucia  (A.D.  365),  in 
Be  reign  of  Valens,  the  Semi-Arians  held  a  Council  at 
Lampsacus,  in  which  they  condemned  the  Homcean 
formulary  of  Ariminum,  confirmed  the  creed  of  the 
Dedication  (A.D.  341),  and,  after  citing  the  Eudoxians 
to  answer  the  accusations  brought  against  them,  pro- 
ceeded to  ratify  that  deposition  of  them,  which  had 

»  [Vu1cEUpr,-i,  pp.jii.JIj,] 

378        The  Council  of  Constanttnople.  fcHAP. 

already  been  pronounced  at  Seleucla.  At  this  tiM 
they  seem  to  have  entertained  hopes  of  gaining  4e 
Emperor;  but,  on  finding  the  influence  of  Eudoxiia. 
paramount  at  Court,  their  horror  or  jealousy  ofhii 
party  led  them  to  a  bolder  step.  They  resolved  cm 
putting  themselves  under  the  protection  of  Valen-i 
tinian,  the  orthodox  Emperor  of  the  West ;  ant 
finding  it  necessary  for  this  purpose  to  stand  wcS 
with  the  Latin  Church,  they  at  length  overcame  thdr 
repugnance  to  the  Homoilsion,  and  subscribed  a  fOP 
raula,  of  which  (at  least  till  the  Council  of  Constant^ 
nople,  A.D.  360)  they  had  been  among  the  moS 
eager  and  obstinate  opposers.  Fifty-nine  Scnii-AriiU' 
Bishops  gave  in  their  assent  to  orthodoxy  on  tlA 
memorable  occasion,  which  took  place  A.D.  366.  Thdf 
deputies  were  received  into  communion  by  Liberia 
who  had  recovered  himself  at  Ariminum,  and  t 
wrote  letters  in  favour  of  these  new  converts  to 
Churches  of  the  East.  On  their  return,  they  prt 
sented  themselves  before  an  orthodox  Council  ll 
sitting  at  Tyana,  exhibited  the  commendatory  letl 
which  they  had  received  from  Italy,  Gaul,  Afric 
and  Sicily,  as  well  as  Rome,  and  were  joyfully  I 
knowledged  by  the  assembled  Fathers  as  tnembent 
the  Catholic  body.  A  final  Council  was  appointedl 
Tarsus  ;  whither  it  was  hoped  dll  the  Churches  of  H 
East  would  send  representatives,  in  order  to  compld 
the  reconciliation  between  the  two  parties. 
enough  had  been  done,  as  it  would  seem,  in 
external  course  of  events,  to  unite  the  scattCK 
portions  of  the  Church  ;  and,  when  that  end  was  a 
the  point  of  accomplishment,  the  usual  law  of  Divl 
Providence  intervened,  and  left  the  sequel  of  the  u 

^%Cr.  ILJ    The  (MJadi  rf  Crmstam^^lu 


^  a  task  aad  a  tiial  i^  Orr5=cizr55  i3drr5ii:a!2]r.     Tlw 
Project  of  tiic  Cccndj  fkDfc  :  thErtr-frcir  Seni-Ar£2:n 
bishops  suddenly  opposed  tbr^-^^Zre?  to*  i2:e-  p-::rr>cse 
of  their  brethren,  2r>d  przcfst-frd  2^2i::5t  ibe  Hrrz^tsz^n^ 
The  Emperor,  <:»3  ijrye  otber  iizDil  re^:c.r:tZy  hsptired 
by  Eudoxius,  r^a^-^rrf^  :  f:-rb£if e  the  propcrsec  Coun- 
cil, and  prcceeded   ic-  is^je  as   edSn,  in  Trhfch   all 
bishops  were  depc'sed  frc»m  ths^zr  Sees  irbo  had  baen 
banished  usider  Cc^riftartz-ES.  srjd  restored  by  Joilian, 
It  was  at  this  time,  thst  the  rfth  exile  of  Aihanasiias 
took  place,  which  was  lately  mtr.rlci^ed-     A  n:ore 
cruel  persecution  fc'Iicwed  in  A-I-.  571,  and  lasted  for 
several  vears.     The  ccath  of  Vz]er3,  A.D.    ;7S,  was 
followed  bv  the  dDHTifall  of  Arianism  in  t"^e 
Eastern  Church. 

As  to  Semi-AriamssL  it  disaooears  from  ecdesias- 
tical  histon*  at  the  date  of  the  proposed  Council  of 
Tarsus  (A.D.  367* ;  from  which  time  the  portion  of  the 
party,  which  remained  non-conformist,  is  more  properly 
designated  Macedonian,  or  Pneumatomachfsr,  from 
the  chief  article  of  their  heresv. 


During  the  reign  of  Valens,  much  had  been  done  in 
furtherance  of  e\'angelical  truth,  in  the  still  remaining 
territory  of  Arianism,  by  the  proceedings  of  the  Semi- 
Arians ;  but  at  the  same  period  symptoms  of  return- 
ing orthodoxy,  even  in  its  purest  form,  had  appeared 
in  Constantinople  itself  On  the  death  of  Eudoxius 
(A.D.  370),  the  Catholics  elected  an  orthodox  successor, 
by  name  Evagrius.  He  was  instantly  banished  by 
the  Emperor's  command  ;  and  the  population  of  Con- 
stantinople seconded  the  act  of  Valens,  by  the  most 

380        The  Council  of  Constantinople,  [chap. 

unprovoked  excesses  towards  the  Catholics.     Eigh^^ 
of  their  clergy,  who  were  in  consequence  deputed  Xzo 
lay  their  grievances  before  the  Emperor,  lost  their 
lives,  under  circumstances  of  extreme  treachery  and 
barbarity.     Faith,  which  was  able  to  stand  its  ground 
in    such    a    season    of    persecution,    was    naturally 
prompted  to  more  strenuous  acts,  when  prosperous 
times  succeeded.     On  the  death  of  Valens,  the  Catho- 
lics of  Constantinople  looked  beyond  their  own  com- 
munity  for  assistance,  in   combating*  the   dominant 
heresy.     Evagrius,  whom  they  had  elected  to  the  See, 
seems  to  have  died  in  exile ;  and  they  invited  to  his 
place  the  celebrated  Gregory  Nazianzen,  a  man  of 
diversified    accomplishments,    distinguished    for    his 
eloquence,  and  still  more  for  his  orthodoxy,  his  in- 
tegrity, and  the  innocence,  amiableness,  and  refine- 
ment of  his  character. 

Gregory  was  a  native  of  Cappadocia,  and  an  intimate 
friend  of  the  great  Basil,  with  whom  he  had  studied  at 
Athens.  On  Basil's  elevation  to  the  exarchate  of 
Caesarea,  Gregory  had  been  placed  by  him  in  the 
bishoprick  of  Sasime  ;  but,  ths  appointment  being 
contested  by  Anthimus,  who  claimed  the  primacy 
of  the  lower  Cappadocia,  he  retired  to  Nazianzus,  his 
father's  diocese,  where  he  took  on  himself  those  duties, 
to  which  the  elder  Gregory  had  become  unequal. 
After  the  death  of  the  latter,  he  remained  for  several 
years  without  pastoral  employment,  till  the  call  of 
the  Catholics  brought  him  to  Constantinople.  His 
election  was  approved  by  Meletius,  patriarch  of 
Antioch  ;  and  by  Peter,  the  successor  of  Athanasius, 
who  by  letter  recognized  his  accession  to  the  metro- 
politan sec. 

.  Ti.]  The  Council  of  Constantiftopk. 

On  his  first  arrival  there,  he  had  no  more  suitable 
place  of  worship  than  his  own  lodgings,  wliero  ho 
preached  the  Catholic  doctrine  to  the  dwindled  com- 
munion over  which  he  presided.  But  the  result 
which  Constantiiis  had  anticipated,  when  he  denied  to 
i  Athanasius  a  Church  in  Antioch,  soon  showed  itself 
at  Constantinople.  His  congregation  increased  ;  the 
house,  in  which  they  assembled,  was  converted  into  a 
church  by  the  pious  liberality  of  its  owner,  with  the 
name  of  Anastasia,  in  hope  of  that  resurrection  which 
now  awaited  the  long-buried  truths  of  the  Gospel. 
The  contempt,  with  which  the  Arian.'!  had  first  re- 
garded him,  was  succeeded  by  a  persecution  on  the 
part  of  the  populace.  An  attempt  was  made  to  stone 
h'm  ;  his  church  was  attacked,  and  he  himself  brought 
before  a  magistrate,  under  pretence  of  having  caused 
the  riot.  -  Violence  so  unjust  did  but  increase  the 
influence,  which  a  disdainful  toleration  had  allowed 
^h^m  to  establish ;  and  the  accession  of  the  orthodox 
^^Bieodosius  secured  it. 

^^nOn  his  arrival  at  Constantinople,  the  new  Emperor 
^Ipsolved  on  executing  in  his  capital  the  determination, 
which  he  had  already  prescribed  by  edict  to  the  East- 
ern  Empire.     The  Arian  Bishops  were   required   to 
subscribe  the  Nicene  formulary,  or  to  quit  their  sees, 
lophilus,  the  Eusebian  successor  of  Eudoxius,  who 
already  been   introduced   to   our  notice  as   an 
implice  in  the  seduction  of  Liberius,  was  first  prc- 
ited  with  this  alternative  ;  and,  with  an  honesty  of 
lich  his  party  aflbrds  few  instances,  he  refused  at 
to  assent  to  opinions,  which  he  had  all  through 
life   been   opposing,  and   retired   from   the   city, 
my  bishops,  however,  of  the  Arian  party  ccnformed; 

382        The  Council  of  Consiantinople.  [chap.  v. 

and  the  Church  was  unhappily  inundated  by  the  very 
evil,  which  in  the  reign  of  Constantihe  the  Athana- 
sians  had  strenuously  and  successfully  withstood. 

The  unfortunate  policy,  which  led  to  this  measure, 
might  seem  at  first  sight  to   be  sanctioned   by  the 
decree  of  the  Alexandrian  Council,  which  made  sub- 
scription  the  test   of  orthodoxy  ;   but,  on   a   closer 
inspection,  the  cases  will  be  found  to  be  altogether 
dissimilar.     When  Athanasius  acted  upon  that  prin- 
ciple, in  the  reign  of  Julian,  there  was   no  secular 
object  to  be  gained  by  conformity ;   or  rather,  the 
malevolence  of  the  Emperor  was  peculiarly  directed 
against  those,  whether  orthodox  or  Semi-Arians,  who 
evinced  any  earnestness  about  Christian  truth.     Even 
then,  the  recognition  was  not  extended  to  those  who 
had  taken  an  active  part  on  the  side  of  heresy.     On 
the  other  hand,  the  example  of  Athanasius  himself, 
and  of  Alexander  of  Constantinople,  in  the  reign  of 
Constantine,  sufficiently  marked  their  judgment  in  the 
matter  ;  both  of  them  having  resisted  the  attempt  of 
the   Court  to   force  Arius   upon   the   Church,   even 
though  he  professed  his  assent  to  the  Homousion, 

Whether  or  not  it  was  in  Gregory's  power  to  hinder 
the  recognition  of  the  Arianizers,  or  whether  his  firm- 
ness was  not  equal  to  his  humility  and  zeal,  the  con- 
sequences of  the  measure  are  visible  in  the  conduct  of 
the  General  Council,  which  followed  it.'  He  himself  may 
be  considered  as  the  victim  of  it ;  and  he  has  left  us 
in  poetry  and  in  oratory  his  testimony  to  the  deterio- 
ration of  religious  principle,  which  the  chronic  vicissi- 
tudes of  controversy  had  brought  about  in  the  Eastern 

The  following  passage,  from  one  of  his  orations. 

^CT.  n.]  The  Council  of  Constantinople.       383 

'llustratcs  both  the  state  of  the  times,  and  his  own 
beautiful  character,  though  unequal  to  struggle  against 
tliem,  "Who  is  there,"  he  says,  "but  will  find,  on 
measuring  himself  by  St.  Paul's  rules  for  the  conduct 
of  Bishops  and  Priests, — that  they  should  be  sobur, 
chaste,  not  fond  of  wine,  not  strikers,  apt  to  teach,  un- 
blamable in  all  things,  unassailable  by  the  wicked, — ■ 
that  he  falls  far  short  of  its  perfection  ?....!  am 
alarmed  to  think  of  our  Lord's  censure  of  the  Phari- 
sees, and  his  reproof  of  the  Scribes ;  disgraceful  indeed 
would  it  be,  should  we,  who  are  bid  be  so  far  above 
them  in  virtue,  in  order  to  enter  the  kingdom  of 
heaven,  appear  even  worse  than  they.  ,  .  These 
thoughts  haunt  mc  night  and  day ;  they  consume  my 
bones,  and  feed  on  my  flesh  ;  they  keep  mc  from 
boldness,  or  from  walking  with  erect  countenance. 
They  so  humble  me  and  cramp  my  mind,  and  place 
a  chain  on  my  tongue,  that  I  cannot  think  of  a  Ruler's 
office,  nor  of  correcting  and  guiding  others,  which  is 
a  talent  above  me  ;  but  only,  how  I  myself  may  flee 
from  the  wrath  to  come,  and  scrape  myself  some  little 
from  the  poison  of  my  sin.  First,  I  must  be  cleansed, 
and  then  cleanse  others  ;  learn  wisdom,  and  then 
impart  it ;  draw  near  to  God,  and  then  bring  others 
to  Him;  be  sanctified,  and  then  sanctify.  'When 
will  you  ever  get  to  the  end  of  this  ? '  say  the  all-hasty 
and  unsafe,  who  are  quick  to  build  up  and  to  pull  down. 
'  When  will  you  place  your  light  on  a  candlestick  \ 
Where  is  your  talent  ? '  So  say  friends  of  mine,  who 
have  more  zeal  for  me  than  religious  seriousness. 
Ah,  my  brave  men,  why  ask  my  season  for  acting, 
and  my  plan  ?  Surely  the  last  day  of  payment  is 
soon  enough,  old  age  in  its  extreme  ternL     Grey  hairs 

384        The  Council  of  Constantinople,  [chap^     K 

l\ave  prudence,  and  youth  is  untaught.     Best  be  si  c:>^ 
and  sure,  not  quick  and  thoughtless  ;  a  kingdom  'for 
a  day,  not  a  tyranny  for  a  life  ;  a  little  gold,  not  & 
weight  of  lead.     It  was  the  shallow  earth  shot  forth 
the  early  blade.     Truly  there  is  cause  of  fear,  lest  I  be 
bound  hand  and  foot,  and  cast  without  the  marriage- 
chamber,   as   an   audacious   intruder  without   fitting 
garment  among  the  assembled  guests.     And    yet  I 
was  called  thither  from  my  youth  (to  confess  a  matter 
which  few  know),  and  on  God  was  I  thrown  from  the 
womb  ;  made  over  to  Him  by  my  mother's  promise, 
confirmed  in  His  service  by  dangers  afterwards.     Yea, 
and  my  own  wish  grew  up  beside  her  purpose,  and 
my  reason  ran  along  with  it ;  and  all  I  had  to  give, 
wealth,  name,  health,  literature,  I  brought  and  offered 
them  to  Him,  who  called  and  saved  me  ;  my  sole 
enjoyment  of  them  being  to  despise  them,  and  to  have 
something  which  I  could  resign  for  Christ.     To  under- 
take the  direction  and  government  of  souls  is  above 
me,  who  have  not  yet  well  learnt  to  be  guided,  nor  to 
be  sanctified  as  far  as  is  fitting.     Much  more  is  this  so 
in  a  time  like  the  present,  when  it  is  a  great  thing  to 
flee  away  to  some  place  of  shelter,  while  others  are 
whirled  to  and  fro,  and  so  to  escape  the  storm  and 
darkness  of  the  evil  one ;  for  this  is  a  time  when  the 
members  of  the  Christian  body  war  with  each  other, 
and  whatever  there  was  left  of  love  is  come  to  nought. 
Moabites  and  Ammonites,  who  were  forbidden  even  to 
enter  the  Church  of  Christ,  now  tread   our  holiest 
places.   We  have  opened  to  all,  not  gates  of  righteous- 
ness, but  of  mutual  reviling  and  injury.     We  think 
those  the  best  of  men,  not  who  keep  from  every  idle 
word  through  fear  of  God,  but  such  as  have  openly  or 

Covertly  slandered  their  neighbour  most  And  we 
niark  the  sins  of  others,  not  to  lament,  but  to  blame 
them ;  not  to  cure,  but  to  second  the  blow ;  and  to 
make  the  wounds  of  others  an  excuse  for  our  own. 
Men  are  judged  good  and  bad,  not  by  their  course  of 
life,  but  by  their  enmities  and  friendships.  We  praise 
to-day,  we  call  names  to-morrow.  All  things  are 
readily  pardoned  to  impiety.  So  mE^nanimously  are 
we  forgiving  in  wicked  ways^!" 

The  first  disturbance  in  the  reviving  Church  of 
Constantinople  had  arisen  from  the  ambition  of  Max- 
imus,  a  Cynic  philosopher,  who  aimed  at  supplanting 
Gregoiy  in  his  see.  He  was  a  friend  and  countryman 
of  Peter,  the  new  Patriarch  of  Alexandria  ;  and  had 
suffered  banishment  in  the  Oasis,  on  the  persecution 
which  followed  the  death  of  Athanasius.  His  reputa- 
tion was  considerable  among  learned  men  of  the  day, 
as  is  shown  by  the  letters  addressed  to  him  by  Basil. 
Gregory  felt  in  with  him  at  Constantinople  ;  and 
pleased  at  the  apparent  strictness  and  manliness  of  his 
conduct,  he  received  him  into  his  house,  baptized  him, 
and  at  length  admitted  him  into  inferior  orders.  The 
return  made  by  Maximus  to  his  benefactor,  was  to 
conduct  an  intrigue  with  one  of  his  principal  Pres- 
byters ;  to  gain  over  Peter  of  Alexandria,  who  had 
already  recognized  Gregory ;  to  obtain  from  him  the 
presence  of  three  of  his  bishops  ;  and,  entering  the 
metropolitan  church  during  the  night,  to  instal  him- 
self, with  their  aid,  in  the  episcopal  throne,  A  tumult 
ensued,  and  he  was  obliged  to  leave  the  city  ;  but,  far 
from  being  daunted  at  the  immediate  failure  of  his 
plot,  he  laid  his  case  before  a  Council  of  the  West,  his 

_i^lot,  he  laid  hi 

W^         *  Gttg.  Ora 

-137-  [Ji.  69— ;3.  77— So- abtidgeJ. 

386        The  Council  of  Constantinople,  [chap.   v. 

plea  consisting  on  the  one  hand,  in  the  allegation 
that  Gregory,  as  being  Bishop  of  another  Church, 
held  the  See  contrary  to  the  Canons,  and  on  the  other 
hand,  in  the  recognition  which  he  had  obtained  from 
the  Patriarch  of  Alexandria.  The  Council,  deceived 
by  his  representations,  approved  of  his  consecration ; 
but  Theodosius,  to  whom  he  next  addressed  himself, 
saw  through  his  artifices,  and  banished  him. 

Fresh  mortifications  awaited  the  eloquent  preacher, 
to  whom  the  Church  of  Constantinople  owed  its  resur- 
rection. While  the  Arians  censured  his  retiring  habits, 
and  his  abstinence  from  the  innocent  pleasures  of  life, 
his  own  flock  began  to  complain  of  his  neglecting  to 
use  his  influence  at  Court  for  their  advantage.  Over- 
whelmed with  the  disquietudes,  to  which  these  occur- 
rences gave  birth,  Gregory  resolved  to  bid  adieu  to  a 
post  which  required  a  less  sensitive  or  a  more  vigorous 
mind  than  his  own.  In  a  farewell  oration,  he  re- 
counted his  labours  and  sufferings  during  the  time  he 
had  been  among  them,  commemorated  his  successes, 
and  exhorted  them  to  persevere  in  the  truth,  which 
they  had  learned  from  him.  His  congregation  were 
affected  by  this  address  ;  and,  a  reaction  of  feeling 
taking  place,  they  passionately  entreated  him  to 
abandon  a  resolve,  which  would  involve  the  ruin 
of  orthodoxy  in  Constantinople,  and  they  declared  that 
they  would  not  quit  the  church  till  he  acceded  to 
their  importunities.  At  their  entreaties,  he  consented 
to  suspend  the  execution  of  his  purpose  for  a  while  ; 
that  is,  until  the  Eastern  prelates  who  were  expected 
at  the  General  Council,  which  had  by  that  time  been 
convoked,  should  appoint  a  Bishop  in  his  room. 

The  circumstances  attending  the  arrival  of  Theodo- 

fp.  H.^  The  Council  of  Consian/inople.        387 

_||us  at  Constantinople,  connected  as  tliey  were  witli 
the  establishment  of  the  true  religion,  still  were  cal- 
culated to  inflict  an  additional  wound  on  his  feelings, 
and  to  increase  his  indisposition  to  continue  in  his 
post,  endeared  though  it  was  to  him  by  its  first 
associations.  The  inhabitants  of  an  opulent  and 
luxurious  metropolis,  familiarized  to  Arianism  by  its 
forty  years'  ascendancy  among  them,  and  disgusted  at 
the  apparent  severity  of  the  orthodox  school,  prepared 
to  resist  the  installation  of  Gregory  in  the  cathedral 
of  St.  Sophia.  A  strong  military  force  was  appointed 
to  escort  him  thither ;  and  the  Emperor  gave  coun- 
tenance to  the  proceedings  by  his  own  presence. 
Allowing  himself  to  be  put  in  possession  of  the 
church,  Gregory  was  nevertheless  firm  to  his  purpose 
of  not  seating  himself  upon  the  A rchi episcopal  throne; 
and  when  the  light-minded  multitude  clamorously 
required  it,  he  was  unequal  to  the  task  of  addressing 
them,  and  deputed  one  of  his  Presbyters  to  speak  in 
K^^s  stead. 

^K  Nor  were  the  manners  of  the  Court  more  congenial 
Wwft  his  well-regulated  mind,  than  the  lawless  spirit  of 
'the  people.  Ofiended  at  the  disorders  which  he  wit- 
nessed there,  he  shunned  the  condescending  advances 
of  the  Emperor ;  and  was  with  difficulty  withdrawn 
from  the  duties  of  his  station,  the  solitude  of  his  own 
thoughts,  and  the  activity  of  pious  ministrations, 
prayer  and  fasting,  the  punishment  of  offenders  and 
the  visitation  of  the  sick.  Careless  of  personal  splen- 
dour, he  allowed  the  revenues  of  his  see  to  be 
expended  in  supporting  its  dignity,  by  inferior  eccle- 
siastics, who  were  in  his  confidence  ;  and,  while  he 
defended  the  principle,  on  which  Arianism  had  been 

388        The  Council  of  Coiistanthiople.  [cHAr. 

dispossessed   of  its  power,  he  exerted  himself  wit 
earnestness  to  protect  the  heretics  from   all   intern  ^ — 
perate  execution  of  the  Imperial  decree. 

Nor  was  the  elevated  refinement  of  Gregory  better 
adapted  to  sway  the  minds  of  the  corrupt  hierarchy 
which  Arianism  had  engendered,  than  to  rule  the 
Court  and  the  people.  "  If  I  must  speak  the  truth," 
he  says  in  one  of  his  letters,  "  I  feel  disposed  to  shun 
every  conference  of  Bishops ;  because  I  never  saw 
Synod  brought  to  a  happy  issue,  nor  remedying,  but 
rather  increasing,  existing  evils.  For  ever  is  there 
rivalry  and  ambition,  and  these  have  the  mastery  of 
reason  ;— do  not  think  me  extravagant  for  saying  so ; 
— and  a  mediator  is  more  likely  to  be  attacked  him- 
self, than  to  succeed  in  his  pacification.  Accordingly, 
I  have  fallen  back  upon  myself,  and  consider  quiet  the 
only  security  of  life''"." 

Such  was  the  state  of  things,  under  which  the 
second  CEcumenical  Council,  as  it  has  since  been  con- 
sidered, was  convoked.  It  met  in  May,  A.D.  381 ; 
being  designed  to  put  an  end,  as  far  as  might  be,  to 
those  very  disorders,  which  unhappily  found  their 
principal  exercise  in  the  assemblies  which  were  to 
remove  them.  The  Western  Church  enjoyed  at  this 
time  an  almost  perfect  peace,  and  sent  no  deputies  to 
Constantinople.  But  in  the  Oriental  provinces,  besides 
the  distractions  caused  by  the  various  heretical  off- 
shoots of  Arianism,  its  indirect  effects  existed  in  the 
dissensions  of  the  Catholics  themselves ;  in  the  schism 
at  Antioch ;  in  the  claims  of  Maximus  to  the  see  of 

«  Greg.  Naz.  Ep.  55.     [Ep.  130.] 

^^CT.  II.]  The  Co7incil  of  Constantinople.        389 

Constantinople  ;  and  in  recent  disturbances  at  Alexan- 
*i  ria,  where  the  loss  of  Athanasius  was  already  painfully 
V-isible.  Added  to  these,  was  the  ambiguous  position 
of  the  Macedonians  ;  who  resisted  the  orthodox  doc- 
trine, yet  were  only  by  implication  heretical,  or  at 
least  some  of  them  far  less  than  others.  Thirty-six 
of  their  Bishops  attended  the  Council,  principally 
from  the  neighbourhood  of  the  Hellespont ;  of  the 
orthodox  there  were  150,  Meletius,  of  Antioch,  being 
the  president.  Other  eminent  prelates  present  were 
Gregory  Nyssen,  brother  of  St.  Basil,  who  had  died 
some  years  before ;  Amphilochius  of  Iconium,  Dio- 
donis  of  Tarsus,  Cyril  of  Jerusalem,  and  Gelasius  of 
CtEsarea,  in  Palestine. 

The  Council  had  scarcely  accomplished  its  first  act, 
the  establishment  of  Gregory  in  the  see  of  Constan- 
tinople, to  the  exclusion  of  Maximus,  when  Meletius, 
the  President,  died  ;  an  unhappy  event,  as  not  only 
removing  a  check  from  its  more  turbulent  members, 
but  in  itself  supplying  the  materials  of  immediate 
discord.  An  arrangement  had  been  effected  between 
the  two  orthodox  communions  at  Antioch,  by  which  it 
was  provided,  that  the  survivor  of  the  rival  Bishops 
should  be  acknowledged  by  the  opposite  party,  and  a 
termination  thus  put  to  the  schism.  This  was  in 
accordance  with  the  principle  acted  upon  by  the 
Alexandrian  Council,  on  the  separation  of  the  Mele- 
tians  from  the  Arians.  At  that  time  the  Eustathian 
party  was  called  on  to  concede,  by  acknowledging 
Meletius ;  and  now,  on  the  death  of  Meletius,  it  became 
the  duty  of  the  Meletians  in  turn  to  submit  to  Pauli- 
nu3,  whom  Lucifer  had  consecrated  as  Bishop  of  the 
F.ufitathian.s.     Schism,  however,  admits  "ot  of  these 

390        The  Council  of  Constantinople,  [chap.  v. 

simple  remedies.  The  self-will  of  a  Latin  Bishop  had 
defeated  the  plan  of  conciliation  in  the  former  instance  ; 
and  now  the  pride  and  jealousy  of  the  Orientals  revolted 
from  communion  with  a  prelate  of  Latin  creation. 
The  attempt  of  Gregory,  who  had  succeeded  to  the 
presidency  of  the  Council,  to  calm  their  angry  feelings, 
and  to  persuade  them  to  deal  fairly  with  the  Eusta- 
thians,  as  well  as  to  restore  peace  to  the  Church,  only 
directed  their  violence  against  himself  It  was  in 
vain  that  his  own  connection  with  the  Meletian  party 
evidenced  the  moderation  and  candour  of  his  advice  ; 
in  vain  that  the  age  of  Paulinus  gave  assurance,  that 
the  nominal  triumph  of  the  Latins  could  be  of  no  long 
continuance.  Flavian,  who,  together  with  others,  had 
solemnly  sworn,  that  he  would  not  accept  the  bishop- 
rick  in  case  of  the  death  of  Meletius,  permitted  himself 
to  be  elevated  to  the  vacant  see  ;  and  Gregory,  driven 
from  the  Council,  took  refuge  from  its  clamours  in  a 
remote  part  of  Constantinople. 

About  this  time  the  arrival  of  the  Egyptian  bishops 
increased  the  dissension.  By  some  inexplicable  omis- 
sion they  had  not  been  summoned  to  the  Council ; 
and  they  came,  inflamed  with  resentment  against  thie 
Orientals.  They  had  throughout  taken  the  side  of 
Paulinus,  and  now  their  earnestness  in  his  favour 
was  increased  by  their  jealousy  of  his  opponents. 
Another  cause  of  offence  was  given  to  them,  in  the 
recognition  of  Gregory  before  their  arrival ;  nor  did 
his  siding  with  them  in  behalf  of  Paulinus,  avail  to 
avert  from  him  the  consequences  of  their  indignation. 
Maximus  was  their  countryman,  and  the  deposition 
of  Gregory  was  necessary  to  appease  their  insulted 
patriotism.  Accordingly,  the  former  charge  was  revived 

Sect.  h.J  The  Council  of  Constantinople. 


^^^  pressc( 
^^H  Rome. 

of  the  illegality  of  his  promotion.  A  Canon  of  the 
icene  Council  prohibited  the  translation  of  bishops, 
priests,  or  deacons,  from  Church  to  Church  ;  and, 
■while  it  was  calumniously  pretended,  that  Gregory 
Jiad  held  in  succession  three  bishopricks,  Sasime, 
Nazianzus,  and  Constantinople,  it  could  not  be  denied, 
that,  at  least,  he  had  passed  from  Nazianzus,  the 
place  of  his  original  ordination,  to  the  Imperial  city. 
Urged  by  this  fresh  attack,  Gregory  once  more  re- 
solved to  retire  from  an  eminence,  which  he  had  from 
the  first  been  reluctant  to  occupy,  except  for  the  sake 
of  the  re«ie  nib  ranees,  with  which  it  was  connected. 
The  Emperor  with  difficulty  accepted  his  resignation; 
but  at  length  allowed  him  to  depart  from  ConstantiT 
noplc,  Nectarius  being  placed  on  the  patriarchal 
throne  in  his  stead. 

In  the  mean  while,  a  Council  had  been  held  at 
Aquileia  of  the  bishops  of  the  north  of  Italy,  with  a 
view  of  inquiring  into  the  faith  of  two  Bishops  of 
t)acia,  accused  of  Arianism.  During  its  session, 
news  was  brought  of  the  determination  of  the  Con- 
stantinopolitan  Fathers  to  appoint  a  successor  to 
Ideletius  ;  and,  surprised  both  by  the  unexpected 
continuation  of  the  schism,  and  by  the  slight  put  on 
■themselves,  they  petitioned  Theodosius  to  permit  a 
;eneral  Council  to  be  convoked  at  Alexandria,  which 
Jlhc  delegates  of  the  Latin  Church  might  attend. 
Some  dissatisfaction,  moreover,  was  felt  for  a  time 
at  the  appointment  of  Nectarius,  in  the  place  of 
Maximus,  whom  they  had  originally  recognized. 
They  changed  their  petition  shortly  after,  and  ex- 
pressed a  wish  that  a  Council  should  be  held  at 

392        The  Council  of  Constantinople,  [chap,  v. 

These  letters  from  the  West  were  submitted  to  the 
Council  of  Constantinople,  at  its  second,  or,  (as  some 
say,)  third  sitting,  A.D.  382  or  383,  at  which  Nectarius 
presided.  An  answer  was  returned  to  the  Latins,  de- 
clining to  repair  to  Rome,  on  the  ground  of  the  incon- 
venience, which  would  arise  from  the  absence  of  the 
Eastern  bishops  from  their  dioceses ;  the  Creed  and 
other  doctrinal  statements  of  the  Council  were  sent 
them,  and  the  promotion  of  Nectarius  and  Flavian  was 
maintained  to  be  agreeable  to  the  Nicene  Canons, 
which  determined,  that  the  Bishops  of  a  province  had 
the  right  of  consecrating  such  of  their  brethren,  as 
were  chosen  by  the  people  and  clergy,  without  the 
interposition  of  foreign  Churches  ;  an  exhortation  to 
follow  peace  was  added,  and  to  prefer  the  edification 
of  the  whole  body  of  Christians,  to  personal  attach- 
ments and  the  interests  of  individuals. 

Thus  ended  the  second  General  Council.  As  to 
the  addition  made  by  it  to  the  Nicene  Creed,  it  is 
conceived  in  the  temperate  spirit,  which  might  be  ex- 
pected from  those  men,  who  took  the  more  active 
share  in  its  doctrinal  discussions.  The  ambitious  and 
tumultuous  part  of  the  assembly  seems  to  have  been 
weary  of  the  controversy,  and  to  have  left  its  settle- 
ment to  the  more  experienced  and  serious-minded  of 
their  body.  The  Creed  of  Constantinople  is  said  to 
be  the  composition  of  Gregory  NyssenS. 

From  the  date  of  this  Council,  Arianism  was  formed 
into  a  sect  exterior  to  the  Catholic  Church ;   and, 

*  Whether  or  not  the  Macedonians  explicitly  denied  the  divinity  of  the 
Holy  Spirit,  is  uncertaun;  but  they  viewed  Him  as  essentially  separate 

!CT.  n.]  The  Council  of  Constantinople.        393 

taking  refuge  among  the  Barbarian  Invaders  of  the 
Empire,  is  merged  among  those  extenial  enemies  of 
Christianity,  whose  history  cannot  be  regarded  as 
strictly  ecclesiastical.  Such  is  the  general  course  of 
religious  error  ;  which  rises  within  the  sacred  precincts, 
but  in  vain  endeavours  to  take  root  in  a  soil  uncon- 
genial to  it  The  domination  of  heresy,  however  pro- 
longed, is  but  one  stage  in  its  existence ;  it  ever 
hastens  to  an  end,  and  that  end  is  the  triumph  of 
the  Truth.  "I  myself  have  seen  the  ungodly  in 
great  poiver,"  says  the  Psalmist,  "  and  ilourishing  like 
a  green  bay  tree  ;  I  went  by,  and  lo,  he  was  gone  ;  I 
sought  him,  but  his  place  could  nowhere  be  found." 
And  so  of  the  present  perils,  with  which  our  branch  of 
the  Church  is  beset,  as  they  bear  a  marked  resem- 
blance to  those  of  the  fourth  century,  so  are  the 
lessons,  which  we  gain  from  that  ancient  time, 
especially  cheering  and  edifying  to  Christians  of  the 
present  day.  Then  as  now,  there  was  the  prospect, 
and  partly  the  presence  in  the  Church,  of  an  Heretical 
Tower  enthralling  it,  exerting  a  varied  influence  and  a 
usurped  claim  in  the  appointment  of  her  functionaries, 
and  interfering  with  the  management  of  her  internal 
affairs.  Now  as  then,  "  whosoever  shall  fall  upon  tliis 
stone  shall  be  broken,  but  on  whomsoever  it  shall  fall, 

from,  and  external  lo,  (he  One  Indivisible  Godhead.  Accordingly,  ibe 
Cieed  (whicb  is  ilia.1  since  incotpoiaud  inlo  Lhe  public  services  of  (he 
Church),  without  declaring  more  than  the  occasion  rcquircil,  closes  all 
speculations  concerning  the  incomprehensible  subject,  by  simply  confes- 
sing his  unily  with  the  Father  and  Son.  It  declares,  moreover,  that  lie 
is  (he  Lord  (ifupios)  or  Sovereign  Spirit,  because  the  heretics  considered 
Hiin  la  be  but  a  minister  of  God  ;  and  the  supreme  Gieer  of  life,  because 
Ihcjr  considered  Him  a  mere  instrument,  by  wham  we  received  the  gift. 
The  lait  clause  of  the  second  paragraph  in  the  Creed,  is  directed  against 
the  heresy  of  Marccllus  of  Ancyra. 

394        ^'^  Council  of  Constantinople,  [chap. 

it  will  grind  him  to  powder."     Meanwhile,  we  mi 
take  comfort  in  reflecting,  that,  though  the  present 
tyranny  has  more  of  insult,  it  has  hitherto  had  less  of 
scandal,  than  attended  the  ascendancy  of  Arianisia   ; 
we  may  rejoice  in  the   piety,  prudence,  and  varied 
graces  of  our  Spiritual  Rulers  ;  and  may  rest  in  the 
confidence,  that,  should  the  hand  of  Satan  press  us 
sore,  our  Athanasius  and  Basil  will  be  given  us  in 
their  destined   season,   to   break  the  bonds  of  the 
Oppressor,  and  let  the  captives  go  free. 

r  original  Creed  of  Nicsa.  : 
Hist.  i.  8. 

contained  in   Socr. 

Evofiev  eif  em  Veoif,  irarepa  travTQKpa.Topa,  "rravTaiv 
p/joToJv  re  Aral  uopcnwv  troirjTi^v- 

Kat  et?  €va  Kvpiov  iijcroOy  ')(pujTov,  rov  viou  toC  Beov' 
'vvOivTa  it  TOW  •!raTpo<;  (lovoyevrf  tout  eariu  iic  r^5 
jia<:  TO!)  TTWTph'i,  Beov  eic  6eov,  xal  <j>qk  ex  0qito«,  Oeov 
I^^KrjBiVov  4k  deov  aX'r)8i,vav'  yevvT/diiTa  ov  iroiTjBf.vra, 
na/ioova-iov  t^  ivarpi  St'  ov  to,  Trdina  tyevero,  Tti  re  ev 
S  oiipava  Kol  TO.  in  ifi  jf/.     AC  J)pa<i  tow  uvBp<oTrow 

X  StA  T^w  fifier^pav  <rmTi]piav  KareXBovi 
na,  Kal  ivavdpanrTJo'avTa-  TraBowa,  Koi. 
fftrp  yfieptf,  uviKdovTO.    eh   Tov<i    ovpavoii'i,    epypp-evov 

t  (^urra;  koX  veicpov^. 
I  Kal  eh  TO  dyiov  "Kv^pa. 

'•  Tow;  Be  XtyovTa'i,  on  '/f  irork  Ztp  ovk  tJit  koX  irplv 
t  ^v  Kal  oTi  i^  ovK  ovTtiiv  iyhrero'  17  ef 
Ttpw  VTTOtrraaebi'i  fj  ovala^  t^aaxovTii-i  elvar  y  KTiorov, 
I  Tpeinop,  ri  aWoicarov  tov  vlisv  rov  Beov-  uvaSefiaji^et 
ftoy/a  Ka&o\iK^  koX  uTroaroKiKri  eKK\t]<ria. 





are^  for  the  7nost  fart^  according  to  Ttt.t.emont.^ 


eus,  pp.  62,  101 ,  40 

ti  Egypt,  p.  41 49, 

and  Ebion,  heretics,  pp.  20,  21 90 

,  heretics,  p.  21.,        .     .     .     ,     .     .    .     .  137 

heretic,  p.  55 140 

leretic,  p.  55-     *     "• i44 

38,  martyred 167 

s.  Bishop  of  Antioch,  p.  95 168 

retic,pp.  52,  95 169 

heresiarch,  p.  16 171 

as,  pp.  42,  95,  writes  his  Apology.     .     .     .  177 

Missionary  to  the  Indians,  pp.  42,  102.     .  189 

,  Bishop  of  Alexandria,  p.  42 189 

)f  Alexandria,  Master  of  the  Catechetical 

>1,  pp.  48 — 87 189 

;  and  Artemon,  heretics,  pp.  22,  35,  114.     .  193 

mperor^  p.  10 193 

;hop  of  Rome,  pp.  13,  21,  35 197 

:imans  of  Asia  Minor,  p.  15 197 

eretic,  p.  117 201 

39^  Chronological  Table. 


Irenseus,  Bishop  of  Lyons,  p.  54,  martyred  .     .    •    .  202 
Origen,  aged  18,  Master  of  the  Catechetical  School, 

P-  42 203 

Tertullian,  pp.  138,  188,  falls  away  into  Montanism   .  204 
Philostratus  ^vrites  the  Life  of  Apollonius  Tyanaeus, 

P'  109 217 

Noetus,  heretic,  pp.  117,  124 220 

Origen  converts  Gregory  Thaumaturgus,  p.  66  .     •     .  231 

Ammonius  the  Eclectic,  p.  102 232 

Gregory  Thaumaturgus   delivers    his    panegyric    on 

Origen,  p.  108 239 

Plotinus  at  Rome,  pp.  107,  115 .     .  244 

Babylas,  Bishop  of  Antioch  martyred,  p.  3    .     •     .     .  250 

Novatian,  heresiarch,  p.  16 250 

Hippolytus,  p.  200  ;  mart)n: 252 

Death  of  Origen,  aged  69,  p.  107 253 

Sabellius,  heresiarch,  p.  118 255 

Dionysius,  Bishop  of  Rome,  animadverts  on  Dionysius 

of  Alexandria,  p.  126 260 

Paulus  of  Samosata,  heretic,  pp.  3,  27,  171,  186,  203.  260 
Council  against  Paulus,  pp.  27,  128;  with  Creed,  pp. 

129,  192,  322, 343    . 264 

Death  of  Dionysius  of  Alexandria,  p.  108 264 

Paulus  deposed,  p.  3 272 

Quarto-decimans  of  the  Proconsulate  come  to  an  end, 

p.  14 276 

Theonas,  Bishop  of  Alexandria,  p.  66 282 

Hosius,  Bishop  of  Corduba,  pp.  249,  254,  289, 323      .  295 

Meletian  Schism  in  Egypt,  pp.  239,  281-2     .     .     •     .  306 

Donatist  Schism  in  Africa,  p.  245 306 

Constantine's  vision  of  the  Labarum,  p.  246.    .    .    .  312 

Lucian,  martyred,  p.  8 312 

Edict  of  Milan,  p.  245.     .     .     .     , 313 

Eusebius^  Bishop  of  Nicomedia,  p.  260    •    •    •    •    •  319 

Chronological  Table. 

iUius,  heiesiarch, 

pp.  : 

.  237    ■ 


.\lexander  excommunicates  and  ivrites  against  Arius, 

pp.  217,  238 32° 

Battle  of  Hadrianople,  pp.  241,  247 32^^ 

Constantine  writes  to  Athanasius  and  Ariiis,  p.  247    .  324 

Ecumenical  Council  of  Nicsea,  p.  250 325 

Audius,  the  Quarto-deciman  in  Mesopotamia,  p.  15  .  325 

Alhanasius,  Bishop  of  Alexandria,  p.  266 326 

Arius  recalled  from  exile,  p.  a66 330 

Eustathius,  Bishop  of  Antioch,  deposed  by  the  Arians, 

pp.  280,  360 331 

Eusebian  Council  of  Cffisarea,  p.  z8z  .     .     .     .     .     ,  333 
And  of  Tyre,  ibid.     Marcellus,  Bishop  of  Ancyra,  de- 
posed, pp.  280,  313 335 

Athanasius  banished  to  Treves,  p.  2S4. 335 

Death  of  Arius,  p.  269 336 

t)eath  of  Constantine,  who  is  succeeded  in  the  East 

by  Constantius,  p.  280 337 

IDeath  of  Eusebius  of  Csesarea,  who  is  succeeded  by 

Acaciu.s,  p.  27s 340 

.Assemblage  of  exiled  Bishops  at  Rome,  Council  at 

Rome,  p.  285 340 

Xusebian  Council  of  the  Dedication  at  Antioch,  p.  285, 

Semi-Arian  Creed  of  Lucian,  pp.  286,  322,  343,  .  341 
Semi-Arian  Creed  of  Antioch,  called  the  Macrosttcli, 

P-  287      . 345 

Oreat  Council  of  Sardica,  pp.  289,  313 347 

^usebian  Council,  p.  289,  and  Semi-Arian  Creed,  p. 

342,  of  Pliilippopolis 347 

Council  of  Milan,  p.  292 347 

Athanasius  returns  from  exile,  pp.  290,  360  ....  348 

Formal  recantation  of  Valens  and  Ursacius,  p.  251     ,  349 

Death  of  Constans,  p.  303 350 

Poulus  of  Constantinople  martjTed,  p.  311    ....  350 

chronological  Table, 

Battle  of  Miirsa,p.  278 

Kusebian    Council,    pp.    314,    336,   with  Semi-Arian 
Creed  of  Sirmiura,  against  Photinus,pp,3i4,  322, 


Eusebian  Council  of  Axles,  pp.  314,  315       .... 
Eusebian  Council  of  Milan,  p.  316  .,.,,,. 

Hilary  exiled  in  Phrygia,  p,  300 ^ 

Liberius  tempted,  p.  318 ; 

Syrianus  and  George  in  Alexandria,  p.  329  .     ,     .    .  j 

Aetius  and  Eunomius,  Anomceans,  p.  337    .    ,    .    .  j 
Eusebian  or  Acacian  Conferences  and  Creeds  of  Sir- 

mium ;  fall  of  Liberius  and  Hosius,  pp.  333 — 

'       3z6,  341 I 

Acacian  Council  of  Antiocli,  p.  341 3 

Semi-Aiian  Council  of  Ancyra,  pp.  300,  341      ...  3 
Acacian  Councils  of  Seleucia  (p.  345)  and  Ariminum, 

P-348 3 

Eudoxius  at  Constantinople,  p.  361 3 

Acacian  Council  at  Constantinople,  pp.  347,  351,  358  3 
Meletius,  Bishop  of  Ancioch,  p.  361,     Deatli  of  Con- 

stantius,  pp.  344,  352 3 

Julian  restores  the  exiled  Bishops,  p.  353 3 

Council  of  Alexandria,  p.  355 3 

Schism  of  Antioch,  p.  364. i 

Semi-Arian  Council  of  Lampsacus,  p.  377     .     .     .    .  ; 
Fifty-nine  Semi-Arian  Bishops  accept  tlie  Jfomoutioit, 

P-378 ; 

Apollinaris,  heresiarch,  p.  ^21 , 

Basil,  Exarch  of  Oesarea,  p.  375 ,    , 

Death  of  Eudoxius,  p.  379 

Eighty  Catholic  Clei^y  burned  at  sea,  380    .... 

Persecution  of  Catholics,  p.  380 

Athanosius  excommunicates  one  of  the  dukes  of  Lybia 

P-  374 

Chronological  Table.  40  r 


Athanasius,  374. »     •  373 

Valens,  p.  380 378 

us,  Emperor,  p.  38/ 379 

^Tazianzen  at  Constantinople,  ibid  .     .     .     .  379 

:al  Council  of  Constantinople,  pp.  373,  &c   .  381 

,  Quarto-deciman,  p.  17    ..•..•    •  395 

L'  J 


{Vide  Sujira,  p.  8.) 

RliTCM  lias  been  written  at  home,  and  more  has  come  to  us 
from  abroad,  on  the  subject  of  the  early  Syrian  theology, 
since  this  Volume  was  published  At  that  time,  it  was  at 
Oxford  considered  a  paradox  to  look  to  Antioch  for  the 
origin  of  a  heresy  which  takes  its  name  from  an  Alexandrian 
ecclesiastic,  and  which  Mosheim  had  ruled  to  be  one  out  of 
many  instances  of  the  introduction  of  Neo-Platonic  ideas 
into  the  Christian  Church.  The  Divinity  Professor  of  the 
day,  a  learned  and  kind  man.  Dr.  Burton,  in  talking  \vith  me 
on  the  subject,  did  but  qualify  his  surprise  at  the  view 
■whicli  I  had  taken,  by  saying  to  me,  "  Of  course  you  have  a 
right  to  your  own  opinion."  Since  that  time,  it  has  become 
dear,  from  the  works  of  Neander  and  others,  that  Arianism 
'Was  but  one  out  of  various  errors,  traceable  to  one  and  the 
same  mode  of  theologizing,  and  that  mode,  as  well  as  the 
errors  it  originated,  the  characteristics  of  the  Syrian  school. 
.  have  thought  it  would  tlirow  hght  on  the  somewhat 
[iXneagre  account  of  it  at  the  begimiiug  of  this  Volume,  if  I 
L-liere  added  a  passage  on  the  same  subject,  as  contained  in 
e  of  tny  subsequent  works^. 

The  Churches  of  Syria  and  Asia  Minor  were  the  m» 
'  intellectual  portion  of  early  Christendom.     Alexandria  w 

"  Essay  an  the  Deve 

ipmcnt  uf  Chiisiii 
D  D  2 

404  Appendix. 

but  one  metropolis  in  a  large  region,  and  contained  the  philo- 
sophy of  the  whole  Patriarchate;  but  Syria  abounded  in 
wealthy  and  luxurious  cities,  the  creation  of  the  Seleucidae, 
where  the  arts  and  the  schools  of  Greece  had  full  opportuni- 
ties of  cultivation.  For  a  time  too, — ^for  tlie  first  two  hundred 
years,  as  some  think, — ^Alexandria  was  the  only  See  as  well 
as  the  only  School  of  Egypt ;  while  Syria  was  divided  into 
small  dioceses,  each  of  which  had  at  first  an  authority  of 
its  own,  and  which,  even  after  the  growth  of  the  Patriarchal 
power,  received  their  respective  bishops,  not  from  the  See  of 
Antioch,  but  from  their  own  metropolitan.  In  Syria  too  the 
schools  were  private,  a  circumstance  which  would  tend  both 
to  diversity  in  religious  opinion,  and  incaution  in  the  ex- 
pression of  it ;  but  the  sole  catechetical  school  of  Egypt  was 
the  organ  of  the  Church,  and  its  Bishop  could  banish  Origen 
for  speculations  which  developed  and  ripened  with  impunity 
in  S)Tia. 

But  the  immediate  source  of  that  fertility  in  heresy,  which 
is  the  unhappy  distinction  of  the  Syrian  Church,  was  its 
celebrated  Exegetical  School.  The  history  of  that  school  is 
summed  up  in  the  broad  characteristic  fact,  on  the  one  hand 
that  it  devoted  itself  to  the  literal  and  critical  interpretation 
of  Scripture,  and  on  the  other  that  it  gave  rise  first  to  the 
Arian  and  then  to  the  Nestorian  heresy.  In  all  ages  of  the 
Church,  her  teachers  have  shown  a  disinclination  to  confine 
themselves  to  the  mere  literal  interpretation  of  Scripture. 
Her  most  subtle  and  powerful  method  of  proof,  whether  in 
ancient  or  modem  times,  is  the  mystical  sense,  which  is  so 
frequently  used  in  doctrinal  controversy  as  on  many  occasions 
to  supersede  any  other.  In  the  early  centuries  we  find  this 
method  of  interpretation  to  be  the  very  ground  for  receiving 
as  revealed  the  doctrine  of  the  Holy  Trinity.  Whether  we 
betake  ourselves  to  the  Ante-Nicene  writers  or  the  Nicene, 
certain  texts  will  meet  us,  which  do  not  obviously  refer  to 
that  doctrine,  yet  are  put  forward  as  palmary  proofs  of  it 


On  ihe  other  hand,  if  evidence  be  wanted  of  the  connexion  of 
heterodoxy  and  biblical  criticism  in  that  age,  it  is  found  in 
the  fact  that,  not  long  after  their  contemporaneous  appear- 
ance in  Syria,  they  are  found  combined  in  the  person  of 
Theodore  of  Heraclea,  so  called  from  the  place  both  of  his 
birth  and  his  bishoprick,  an  able  commentator  and  an  active 
enemy  of  SL  Athanasius,  though  a  Thracian  unconnected 
except  by  sympathy  with  the  Patriarchate  of  Antioch.  The 
case  had  been  the  same  in  a  still  earlier  age ; — the  Jews 
dung  to  the  literal  sense  of  the  Old  Testament  and  rejected 
the  Gospel;  the  Christian  Apologists  proved  its  divinity  by 
means  of  the  allegorical.  The  formal  connexion  of  this  mode 
of  interpretation  mth  Christian  dieology  is  noticed  by 
Porphyry,  who  speaks  of  Origen  and  others  as  borrowing  it 
from  heathen  philosophy,  both  in  explanation  of  the  Old 
Testament  and  in  defence  of  their  on-n  doctrine.  It  may 
almost  be  laid  down  as  an  historical  fact  that  the  mystical 
interpretation  and  orthodoxy  will  stand  or  fall  together. 

This  is  clearly  seen,  as  regards  the  primitive  theology,  by  a 
recent  writer,  in  the  course  of  a  Dissertation  upon  St.  Ephrem 
After  observing  that  Theodore  of  Heraclea,  Eusebius,  and 
Diodorus  gave  a  systematic  opposition  to  the  mystical  inter- 
■pretation,  which  had  a  sort  of  sanction  from  Antiquity  and 
the  orthodox  Church,  he  proceeds;  "Ephrem  is  not  as  sober 
in  his  interpretations,  nor  could  he  be,  since  he  was  azealous 
<3isciple  of  the  orthodox  faith.  For  all  those  who  are  most 
cnainent  in  sucii  sobriety  were  as  far  as  possible  removed  from 

ihe  faith  of  the  Councils On  the  other  hand,  all  who 

Tetained  the  faith  of  the  Church  never  entirely  dispensed 
Tvith  tlie  spiritual  sense  of  the  Scriptures.  For  the  Councils 
■watched  over  the  orthodox  faith ;  nor  was  it  safe  in  those 
ages,  as  we  learn  especially  from  the  instance  of  Theodore 
of  Mopsuestia,  to  desert  the  spiritual  for  an  exclusive  culti- 
vation of  the  literal  method.  Moreover,  tlie  allegorical 
teipretation,  even  when  the  literal  sense  was  not  injured,  was 


4o6  Appendix. 

also  preserved ;  because  in  those  times,  when  both  heretics 
and  Jews  in  controversy  were  stubborn  in  their  objections  to 
Christian  doctrine,  maintaining  that  the  Messiah  was  yet  to 
come,  or  denying  the  abrogation  of  the  Sabbath  and  cere- 
monial law,  or  ridiculing  the  Christian  doctrine  of  the 
Trinity,  and  especially  that  of  Christ's  Divine  Nature,  imder 
such  circumstances  ecclesiastical  writers  found  it  to  their 
purpose,  in  answer  to  such  exceptions,  violently  to  refer 
every  part  of  Scripture  by  allegory  to  Christ  and  His 

The  School  of  Antioch  appears  to  have  risen  in  the  middle 
of  the  third  century ;  but  there  is  no  evidence  to  determine 
whether  it  was  a  local  institution,  or,  as  is  more  probable,  a 
discipline  or  method  characteristic  of  the  Syrian  Church. 
Dorotheus  is  one  of  its  earliest  teachers ;  he  is  known  as  a 
Hebrew  scholar,  as  well  as  a  commentator  on  the  sacred 
text,  and  he  was  the  master  of  Eusebius  of  Caesarea.  Lucian, 
the  friend  of  the  notorious  Paul  of  Samosata,  and. for  three 
successive  Episcopates  after  him  a  seceder  from  the  Church, 
though  afterwards  a  martyr  in  it,  was  the  editor  of  a  new  edi- 
tion of  the  Septuagint,  and  master  of  the  chief  original 
teachers  of  Arianism.  Eusebius  of  Caesarea,  Asterius  called 
the  Sophist,  and  Eusebius  of  Emesa,  Arians  of  the  Nicene 
period,  and  Diodorus,  a  zealous  opponent  of  Arianism,  but 
the  Master  of  Theodore  of  Mopsuestia,  have  all  a  place  in 
the  Exegetical  School.  St.  Chrysostom  and  Theodoret, 
both  Syrians,  and  the  former  the  pupil  of  Diodorus,  adopted 
the  literal  interpretation,  though  preserved  from  its  abuse. 
But  the  principal  doctor  of  the  School  was  the  master  of 
Nestorius,  that  Theodore,  who  has  just  been  mentioned,  and 
who  with  his  writings,  and  with  the  writings  of  Theodoret 
against  St.  Cyril,  and  the  letter  written  by  Ibas  of  Edessa  to 
Maris,  was  condemned  by  the  fifth  QEcumenical  Council. 
Ibas  translated  into  Syriac,  and  Maris  into  Persian,  the 

■  Lengerke,  de  Ephr.  S.  pp.  78 — 8o, 



^ooks  of  Theodore  and  Diodorus^;  and  in  so  doing  they 
^ctame  the  immediate  instruments  of  the  formatioa  of  the 
S*eal  Nestorian  school  and  Churcli  in  farther  Asia. 

As  many  as  ten  thousand  tracts  of  Theodore  are  said  in 
t^is  way  to  have  been  introduced  to  the  knowledge  of  the 
^HThristians  of  Mesopotamia,  Adiabene,  Babylonia,  and  the 
*ieighbouring  countries.  He  was  called  by  those  Churches  , 
absolutely  "  the  Interpreter,"  and  it  eventually  became  the 
rery  profession  of  the  Nestorian  communion  to  follow  him  as 
"  The  doctrine  of  all  our  Eastern  Churches,"  says  the 
Jouncil  under  the  patriarch  Marabas,  "is  founded  on  the 
Beed  of  Nicffia;  but  in  the  exposition  of  the  Scriptures  we 
low  St  Theodore."  "  We  must  by  all  means  remain  firm 
I  the  commentaries  of  the  great  Commentator,"  says  the 
^uncil  under  Sabarjesus ;  "  whoso  shall  in  any  manner  op- 
lipose  them,  or  think  otherwise,  be  he  anathema*."  No  one 
fcniice  the  beginning  of  Christianity,  except  Origen  and  St. 
t-Augiistine,  has  had  such  great  influence  on  his  brethren  as 
f' Theodore  ^ 
■  The  original  Syrian  school  had  possessed  very  marked 
characteristics,  which  it  did  not  lose  when  it  passed  into  a 
new  country  and  into  strange  tongues.  Its  comments  on 
Scripture  seem  to  have  been  clear,  natural,  methodical,  appo- 
site, and  logically  exact.  "In  all  Western  Aramjea,"  says 
Lengerke,  that  is,  in  Syria,  "there  was  but  one  mode  of 
treating  whether  exegetics  or  doctrine,  the  practical^."  Thus 
JSusebiiis  of  Csesarea,  whether  as  a  disputant  or  a  commen- 
tator, is  confessedly  a  writer  of  sense  and  judgment,  and 
Vie  belongs  historically  to  the  Syrian  school,  though  he  does 
not  go  so  far  as  to  c.tcludc  the  mystical  interpretation  or  to 
'  ~  sny  the  verba!  inspiration  of  Scripture.     Again,  we  see  in 

'  Asscman.  t.  3,  p.  30,  p.  livlii.,  &c, 

•  Asiem.  1.  3,  p.  84,  Nmo  .1. 

'  Wegncrn,  Prolcg.  in  Thci.l.  Opp.  p.  i: 

•  De  K[iluiEm  Syr.  p.  6[. 

4oS  Appendix. 

St.  Chrysostom  a  direct,  straightfonvard  treatment  of  the 
sacred  text,  and  a  pointed  application  of  it  to  things  and 
persons  ;  and  Theodoret  abounds  in  modes  of  thinking  and 
reasoning  which  without  any  great  impropriety  may  be  called 
English.  Again,  St.  Cyril  of  Jerusalem,  though  he  does  not 
abstain  from  allegory,  shows  the  character  of  his  school  by 
the  great  stress  he  lays  upon  the  study  of  Scripture,  and,  I 
may  add,  by  the  peculiar  clearness  and  neatness  of  his  style, 
which  will  be  appreciated  by  a  modern  reader. 
■  It  would  have  been  well,  had  the  genius  of  the  S>Tian 
theology  been  ever  in  the  safe  keeping  of  men  such  as  St. 
Cyril,  St.  Chrysostom,  and  Theodoret ;  but  in  Theodore  of 
Mopsuestia,  nay  in  Diodorus  before  him,  it  developed  into 
those  errors,  of  which  Paul  of  Samosata  had  been  the  omen 
on  its  rise.  As  its  attention  was  chiefly  directed  to  the 
examination  of  the  Scriptures,  in  its  interpretation  of  the 
Scriptures  was  its  heretical  temper  discovered ;  and  though 
allegory  can  be  made  an  instrument  of  evading  Scripture 
doctrine,  criticism  may  more  readily  be  turned  to  the  de- 
struction of  doctrine  and  Scripture  together.  Bent  on  ascer- 
taining the  literal  sense,  Theodore  was  naturally  led  to  the 
Hebrew  text  instead  of  the  Septuagint,  and  thence  to  Jewish 
commentators.  Jewish  commentators  naturally  suggested 
events  and  objects  short  of  evangelical  as  the  fulfilment  of  the 
prophetical  announcements,  and  when  it  was  possible,  an 
ethical  sense  instead  of  a  prophetical.  The  eighth  chapter  of 
Proverbs  ceased  to  bear  a  Christian  meaning,  because,  as 
Theodore  maintained,  the  writer  of  the  book  had  received  the 
gift,  not  of  prophecy,  but  of  wisdom.  The  Canticles  must 
be  interpreted  literally;  and  then  it  was  but  an  easy,  or 
rather  a  necessary  step,  to  exclude  the  book  from  the  Canon. 
The  book  of  Job  too  professed  to  be  historical ;  yet  what  was 
it  really  but  a  Gentile  drama  ?  He  also  gave  up  the  books 
of  Chronicles  and  Ezra,  and,  strange  to  say,  the  Epistle  of 
St.  James,  though  it  was  contained  in  the  Peschito  Version 



oT  his  Cbuidi.  Ue  deoled  llut  Psalms  sxiL  and  Ixix.  applied 
to  our  Lard ;  latbcr  he  Hmkcd  the  Messianic  passages  of  fe 
whole  boaktoEborjof  which  the  e^thPsahn  was  one,  and 
the  forty-fifth  another  The  rest  he  expbined  of  Hecekutb 
and  Zcnibbabel,  without  denjing  that  they  mLgfat  be  ac- 
commodated to  an  evangelical  sensed  He  explained  Si. 
Thomas's  wotds,  "  My  Lord  and  my  God,"  as  a  joyful  ex- 
clamacion;  and  our  Lord's,  "Recei^'e  ye  the  Holy  Ghost," as 
an  antidparion  of  the  day  of  Pentecost.  As  might  be  expected, 
he  denied  the  verbal  inspiration  of  Scripture.  Also,  he  held 
that  the  deluge  did  not  cover  the  earth  ;  and,  as  others 
before  him,  he  was  heterodox  on  the  doctrine  of  original  sin, 
and  denied  the  eternity  of  punishment. 

Maintaining  that  the  real  sense  of  Scripture  was,  not  the 
scope  of  a  Divine  Intelligence,  but  the  intention  of  the  mere 
human  organ  of  inspiration,  Theodore  was  led  to  hold,  not 
only  that  that  sense  was  but  one  in  each  text,  but  that  it  was 
continuous  and  single  in  a  context ;  thai  what  was  the  subject 
of  the  composition  in  one  verse,  must  be  the  subject  in  the 
next,  and  that  if  a  Psalm  was  historical  or  prophetical  in  its 
commencement,  it  was  the  one  or  the  other  to  its  termina- 
tion- Even  that  fulness  of  meaning,  refinement  of  thought, 
subtle  versatility  of  feeling,  and  delicate  reserve  or  reverent 
suggestiveness,  which  poets  exemplify,  seem  to  have  been 
excluded  from  his  idea  of  a  sacred  composition.  Accordingly, 
if  a  Psalm  contained  passages  which  could  not  be  applied  to 
our  Lord,  it  followed  that  that  Psalm  did  not  properly  apply 
,  to  Him  at  all,  except  by  accommodation.  Such  at  least  is  the 
doctrine  of  Cosmas,  a  writer  of  Theodore's  school,  who  on 
this  ground  passes  over  the  tivenly-second,  sixty-ninth,  and 
Other  Psalms,  and  limits  the  Messianic  to  the  second,  the 
eighth,  the  forty-fifth,  and  the  hundred  and  tenth.  "David," 
he  says,  "  did  not  make  common  to  the  servants  what 
belongs  to  the  Lord*  Christ,  but  what  was  proper  to  the 


'  t<ngi:[kc,  dc  Ejiliism  Syr.  pp.  JJ — 75. 
■  ZtinraTov,  viJs  U  Ciom,  Tlicsaui.  Ep. 

J.  5  '«. 

4IO  Appendix. 

Lord  he  spoke  of  the  Lord,  and  what  was  proper  to  the 
servants,  of  servants^."  Accordingly  the  twenty-second 
could  not  properly  belong  to  Christ,  because  in  the  begin- 
ning it  spoke  of  the  "  verba  delictorum  meorum,^^  A  remark- 
able consequence  would  follow  from  this  doctrine,  that  as 
Christ  was  divided  from  His  Saints,  so  the  Saints  were  divided 
from  Christ ;  and  an  opening  was  made  for  a  denial  of  the 
doctrine  of  their  cultus^  though  this  denial  in  the  event  has 
not  been  developed  among  the  Nestorians.  But  a  more 
serious  consequence  is  latently  contained  in  it,  and  nothing 
else  than  the  Nestorian  heresy,  viz.  that  our  Lord's  manhood 
is  not  so  intimately  included  in  His  Divine  Personality  that 
His  brethren  according  to  the  flesh  may  be  associated  with 
the  Image  of  the  One  Christ.  Here  St.  Chrysostom  point- 
edly contradicts  the  doctrine  of  Theodore,  though  his 
fellow-pupil  and  friend^ ;  as  does  St.  Ephrsem,  though  a 
Syrian  also  2;  and  St.  Basils 

One  other  characteristic  of  the  Syrian  school,  viewed  as 
independent  of  Nestorius,  should  be  added  : — ^As  it  tended 
to  the  separation  of  the  Divine  Person  of  Christ  from  His 
manhood,  so  did  it  tend  to  explain  away  His  Divine  Presence 
in  the  Sacramental  elements.  Emesti  seems  to  consider 
that  school,  in  modem  language,  Sacramentarian :  and 
certainly  some  of  the  most  cogent  passages  brought  by 
modems  against  the  Catholic  doctrine  of  the  Eucharist  are 
taken  from  writers  who  are  connected  with  that  school ;  as 
the  author,  said  to  be  St.  Chrysostom,  of  the  Epistle  to 
Csesarius,  Theodoret  in  his  Eranistes,  and  Facundus.  Some 
countenance  too  is  given  to  the  same  view  of  the  Eucharist, 
at  least  in  some  parts  of  his  works,  by  Origen,  whose  lan- 
guage concerning  the  Incarnation  also  leans  to  what  was 

*  Montf.  Coll.  Nov.  t.  2,  p.  227. 

*  Roscnmuller,  Hist.  Interpr,  t.  3,  p.  278. 
'  Lengerke*  de  Ephr.  Syr.  pp.  165 — 167. 

*  Ernest,  de  Proph.  Mess.  p.  462. 


afterwards  Nesto nanism.  To  these  may  be  added  Eusebius*, 
-vho,  far  removed,  as  he  was,  from  that  heresy,  was  a  disciple 
of  the  Syrian  school.  The  language  of  the  later  Nestorian 
writera  seems  to  have  been  of  the  same  eharacter*.  Such 
then  on  the  whole  is  the  character  of  that  theology  of  Theo- 
dore, which  passed  from  Cilicia  and  Antioch  to  Edessa  first, 
and  then  to  Nisibis. 

Edessa,  the  metropolis  of  Mesopotamia,  had  remained  an 
Oriental  city  till  the  third  century,  when  it  was  made  a 
Koman  colony  by  Caracalla".  Its  position  on  the  confines 
of  two  empires  gave  it  great  ecclesiastical  importance,  as  the 
channel  by  which  the  theology  of  Rome  and  Greece  was 
Conveyed  to  a  family  of  Christians,  dwelling  in  contempt 
and  persecution  amid  a  still  heathen  world.  It  was  the  seat 
of  various  schools;  apparently  of  a  Greek  school,  where  the 
classics  were  studied  as  well  as  theology,  wh;re  Eusebius  of 
Emesa^  had  originally  been  trained,  and  where  perhaps 
Protogenes  taught^,  'i'here  were  Syrian  schools  attended 
by  heathen  and  Christian  youths  in  common.  The  cultiva- 
tion of  the  native  language  had  been  an  especial  object  of 
its  masters  since  the  time  of  Vespasian,  so  that  the  pure  and 
Tcflned  dialect  went  by  the  name  of  the  Edessene  ^.  At 
l^essa  too  St  Ephrtem  formed  his  own  Syrian  school,  which 
lasted  long  after  him ;  and  there  too  was  the  celebrated 
Fersian  Christian  school,  over  which  Maris  presided,  who 
has  been  already  mentioned  as  the  translator  of  Theodore 
into  Persian  '.  Even  in  the  time  of  the  predecessor  of  Ibas 
in  the  See  {before  a.d.  435)  the  Nestorianisra  of  this  Persian 
School  was  so  notorious  that  Rabbula  the  Bishop  had  ex- 

•  EcoLTheol.  iij.  ii. 

•  Pniressor  Lee's  Serm.  Oct.  i8.i8,  pp.  144 — iji. 

•  Noris.  Opp.  t.  I,  p.  tli. 

'  Au^sti.  EuEcb.  Em.  Opp. 

'  Asscmaa.  p.  cmxxv.  '  Hoffman,  Gram.  Syr,  Priilcg.  {  4. 

'  The  edocalcd  Persian?  were  also  acquainied  with  Syiiac. — Asscmi 
L),  p,  3JI,  Note. 

4 1 2  Appendix. 

pelled  its  masters  and  scholars  2;  and  they,  taking  refuge 
in  the  country  with  which  they  were  connected,  had  intro- 
duced the  heresy  to  the  Churches  subject  to  the  Persian 

Something  ought  to  be  said  of  these  Churches ;  though 
little  is  known  except  what  is  revealed  by  the  fact,  in  itself 
of  no  slight  value,  that  they  had  sustained  two  persecutions 
at  the  hands  of  the  heathen  government  in  the  fourth  and 
fifth  centuries.  One  testimony  is  extant  as  early  as  the  end 
of  the  second  century,  to  the  effect  that  in  Parthia,  Media, 
Persia,  and  Bactria  there  were  Christians  who  "were  not 
overcome  by  evil  laws  and  customs^."  In  the  early  part 
of  the  fourth  century,  a  Bishop  of  Persia  attended  the 
Nicene  Council,  and  about  the  same  time  Christianity  is 
said  to  have  pervaded  nearly  the  whole  of  Assyria*.  Mon- 
achism  had  been  introduced  there  before  the  middle  of  the 
fourth  century,  and  shortiy  after  commenced  that  fearful 
persecution  in  which  sixteen  thousand  Christians  are  said 
to  have  suffered.  It  lasted  thirty  years,  and  is  said  to  have 
recommenced  at  the  end  of  the  century.  The  second  per- 
secution lasted  for  at  least  another  thirty  years  of  the  next, 
at  the  very  time  when  the  Nestorian  troubles  were  in  pro- 
gress in  the  Empire.  Trials  such  as  these  show  the  popu- 
lousness  as  well  as  the  faith  of  the  Churche*  in  those  parts ; 
and  the  number  of  the  Sees,  for  the  names  of  twenty-seven 
Bishops  are  preserved  who  suffered  in  the  former  persecution. 
One  of  them  was  apprehended  together  with  sixteen  priests, 
nine  deacons,  besides  monks  and  nuns  of  his  diocese;  another 
with  twenty-eight  companions,  ecclesiastics  or  regulars; 
another  with  one  hundred  ecclesiastics  of  different  orders ; 
another  with  one  hundred  and  twenty-eight ;  another  with 
his  chorepiscopus  and  two  hundred  and  fifty  of  his  clergy. 
Such  was  the  Church,  consecrated  by  the  blood  of  so  many 

^  Asscman.  p.  Ux.  *  Euseb.  Prsp.  vi.  lo. 

*  Tillcmont,  Mem.  t.  7,  p.  77. 




Appendix.  413 

inartyrs,  wliich  immediately  after  its  glorious  conf^ssioD  fell 
a  prey  to  the  theology  of  Theodore ;  and  which  through  a 
succession  of  ages  discovered  tlie  energy,  when  it  had  lost 
the  purity  of  saints, 

The  members  of  the  Persian  school,  who  had  been  driven 
out  of  Edessa  by  Rabbula,  found  a  wide  field  open  for  their 
exertions  under  the  pagan  government  with  which  they  had 
taken  refuge.  The  Persian  monarchs,  who  had  often  pro- 
hibited by  edict*  the  intercommunion  of  the  Church  under 
their  sway  with  the  countries  towards  the  west,  readily 
extended  iheir  protection  to  exiles,  who  professed  the  means 
of  destroying  its  Catholicity.  Barsumas,  the  most  energetic 
of  them,  was  placed  iri  the  metropolitan  See  of  Nisibis, 
ivhere  also  the  fugitive  school  was  settled  under  the  presi- 
dency of  another  of  their  party ;  while  Maris  was  promoted 
to  the  See  of  Ardaschir.  The  primacy  of  the  Church  had 
from  an  early  period  belonged  to  the  See  of  Seleucia  in 
Babylonia.  Catholicus  was  the  title  appropriated  to  its 
occupant,  as  well  as  to  the  Persian  Primate,  as  being  depu- 
ties of  the  Patriarch  of  Antioch,  and  was  derived  apparently 
from  the  Imperial  dignity  so  called,  denoting  their  function 
as  Procurators-general,  or  officers-in -chief  for  the  regions  in 
■which  they  were  placed.  Acacius,  another  of  the  Edessene 
party,  was  put  into  this  principal  See,  and  suffered,  if  he  did 
not  further,  the  innovations  of  Barsumas,  The  mode  by 
which  the  latter  effected  his  purposes  has  been  left  on 
record  by  an  enemy.  "  Barsumas  accused  BatbuKus,  the 
Catholicus,  before  King  Phcrozes,  whispering,  'These  men 
hold  the  faith  of  the  Romans,  and  are  their  spies.  Give  me 
power  against  them  to  arrest  them."' "  It  is  said  that  in 
this  way  he  obtained  the  death  of  Barburfus,  whom  Acacius 
succeeded.  Wlien  a  minority  resisted '  the  proi  ess  of  schism, 
A  penecution  followed.  The  death  of  seven  thousand  seven 
m,  ch.  47. 

414  Appendix. 

hundred  Catholics  is  said  by  Monophysite  authorities  to 
have  been  the  price  of  the  severance  of  the  Chaldaic  Churches 
from  Christendom  ®.  Their  loss  was  compensated  in  the 
eyes  of  the  government  by  the  multitude  of  Nestorian 
fugitives,  who  flocked  into  Persia  from  the  Empire,  numbers 
of  them  industrious  artisans,  who  sought  a  country  where 
their  own  religion  was  in  the  ascendant. 

The  foundation  of  that  religion  lay,  as  we  have  already 
seen,  in  the  literal  interpretation  of  Scripture,  of  which 
Theodore  was  the  principal  teacher.  The  doctrine,  in  which 
it  formerly  consisted,  is  known  by  the  name  of  Nestorius : 
it  lay  in  the  ascription  of  a  human  as  well  as  a  Divine  Per- 
sonality to  our  Lord ;  and  it  showed  itself  in  den)dng  the 
title  of  "  Mother  of  God  "  or  ^cotokos,  to  St  Mary.  As 
to  our  Lord's  Personality,  it  is  to  be  observed  that  the 
question  of  language  came  in,  which  always  serves  to  perplex 
a  subject  and  make  a  controversy  seem  a  matter  of  words. 
The  native  Syrians  made  a  distinction  between  the  word 
"  Person,"  and  "  Prosopon,"  which  stands  for  it  in  Greek ; 
they  allowed  that  there  was  one  Prosopon  or  Parsopa,  as 
they  called  it,  and  they  held  that  there  were  two  Persons. 
It  is  asked  what  they  meant  hy parsopa:  the  answer  seems 
to  be,  that  they  took  the  word  merely  in  the  sense  of 
character  or  aspect^  a  sense  familiar  to  the  Greek  prosopon^ 
and  quite  irrelevant  as  a  guarantee  of  their  orthodoxy. 
It  follows  moreover  that,  since  the  aspect  of  a  thing  is  its 
impression  upon  the  beholder,  the  personality  to  which  they 
ascribed  unity  must  have  lain  in  our  Lord's  manhood,  and 
not  in  His  Divine  Nature.  But  it  is  hardly  worth  while 
pursuing  the  heresy  to  its  limits.  Next,  as  to  the  phrase 
"  Mother  of  God,"  they  rejected  it  as  unscriptural ;  they 
maintained  that  St.  Mary  was  Mother  of  the  humanity  of 
Christ,  not  of  the  Word,  and  they  fortified  themselves  by 
the  Nicene  Creed,  in  which  no  such  title  is  ascribed  to 


•  Asseman.  t.  2,  p.  403,  t.  3,  p.  393. 

Appendix.  4 1 5 

atevei  might  be  the  obscurity  or  the  plausibility  of 
their  original  dogma,  there  is  nothing  obscure  or  attractive 
in  the  developments,  whether  of  doctrine  or  of  practice,  in 
which  it  issued.  The  first  act  of  the  exiles  of  Edessa,  on 
their  obtaining  power  in  the  Chaldean  communion,  was  to 
abolish  the  celibacy  of  the  clergy,  or,  in  Gibbon's  forcible 

Ivords,  to  allow  "  the  public  and  reiterated  nuptials  of  the 
^ests,  the  bishops,  and  even  the  patriarch  himself" 
fersumas,  the  great  instrmnent  of  the  cliange  of  religion, 
ps  the  first  to  set  an  example  of  the  new  usage,  and  is 
wen  said  by  a  Ncstorian  writer  to  have  married  a  nun  . 
^  passed  a  Canon  at  Councils,  held  at  Seleucia  and  else- 
lliere,  that  Bishops  and  priests  might  marry,  and  might 
renew  their  wives  as  often  as  they  lost  them.  The  Catholic 
who  followed  Acacius  went  so  far  as  to  extend  the  benefit 
of  the  Canon  to  Monks,  that  is,  to  destroy  the  Monastic 
order;  and  his  two  successors  availed  themselves  of  this 
liberty,  and  are  recorded  to  have  been  fathers.  A  restriction, 
lowever,  was  aftenvards  placed  upon  the  Catholic,  and  upon 
the  Episcopal  order. 

Such  were  the  circumstances,  and  such  the  principles, 
under  which  the  See  of  Seleucia  became  the  Rome  of  the 
East  In  the  course  of  time  the  Catholic  took  on  himself 
the  loftier  and  independent  title  of  Patriarch  of  Babylon  ; 
and  though  Seleucia  was  changed  for  Ctesiphon  and  for 
Bagdad',  still  the  name  of  Babylon  was  preserved  from  first 

■  last  as  a  formal  or  ideal  Metropolis.     In  the  time  of  the 
iliphs,  it  was  at  the  head  of  as  many  as  twenty-five  Arch- 
shops  ;  its  Communion  extended  from  China  to  Jerusalem ; 
I  uid  its  numbers,  with  those  of  the  Monophysites,  are  said  to 

have  surpassed  those  of  the   Greek  and  Latin  Churches 

cman.  t.  3,  p.  67. 


4 1 6  Appendix. 




(  Vide  supra,  p.  240.) 

Already  in  the  Notes  (Oxf.)  on  Athanasius  (Ath.  Tn  pp. 
272 — 280),  and  in  Dissert.  Theolog.  iii.  I  have  explained 
my  difficulty  in  following  Bull  and  others  in  the  interpreta- 
tion they  assign  to  certain  statements  made  in  the  first 
age  of  the  Church  concerning  the  Divine  Sonship.  Those 
statements,  taken  in  their  letter,  are  to  the  effect  that  our 
Lord  was  the  word  of  God  before  He  was  the  Son ;  that, 
though,  as  the  Word,  He  was  from  eternity,  His  gennesis  is 
in  essential  connexion  both  with  the  design  and  the  fact  of 
creation ;  that  He  was  born  indeed  of  the  Father  apart  from 
all  time,  but  still  with  a  definite  relation  to  that  beginning  of 
time  when  the  creation  took  place,  and  though  bom,  and 
not  created,  nevertheless  born  definitely  in  order  to  create. 
Before  the  Nicene  Council,  of  the  various  Schools  of  the 
Church,  the  Alexandrian  alone,  is  distinctly  clear  of  this  doc- 
trine ;  and  even  after  the  Council  it  is  found  in  the  West,  in 
Upper  Italy,  Rome,  and  Africa ;  France,  as  represented  by 
Hilary  ^  and  Phcebadius,  having  no  part  in  it.  Nay,  at  Nicaea 
when  that  doctrine  lay  in  the  way  of  the  Council  to  condemn 
it,  it  was  not  distinctly  condemned,  though  to  pass  it  over  was 
in  fact  to  give  it  some  countenance.  Bull  indeed  considers  it 
was  even  recognized  indirectly  by  the  assembled  Fathers,  in 
their  anathematizing  those  who  contradicted  its  distinctive 
formula,  "  He  was  before  He  was  born ; "  in  this  (as  I  have 

'  Vide  however  Hilar,  in  Matt  xxxi  3;   but  he  corrects  himself,  de 
Trin.  xiL 



-  ..1  the  Notes  on  Atlianasius),  1  cannot  agree  with  him, 
^^  at  least  it  is  unaccountable  that  the  Fathers  should  not 
^^e  guarded  their  anathema,  from  Bull's  easy  misinterpre- 
^tion  of  It,  if  the  opinion  which  it  seems  to  countenance 
*a!5  as  much  reprobated  then,  as  it  rightly  is  now. 

The  opinion  which  I  have  been  describing  is,  as  far  as 
^ords  go,  definitely  held  by  Justin,  Tatian,  Theophilus, 
"lethodius,  in  the  East ;  by  Hippolytus,  TertuUian,  Nova- 
tian,  Lactantius,  Zeno,  and  Victorinus,  in  the  West;  and 
that  with  so  plain  an  identity  of  view  in  these  ^-arlous 
Writers,  and  with  such  exact  characteristics,  that  we  cannot 
explain  it  away  into  carelessness  of  writing,  personal  idio- 
syncracy,  or  the  influence  of  some  particular  school ;  but  are 
forced  to  consider  it  as  the  common  property  of  them  all, 
So  that  we  may  interpret  one  nxiter  by  the  other,  and 
illustrate  or  supply  from  the  rest  what  is  obscure  or  deficient 

For  instance:  Justin  says,  "  He  ivas  begotten,  when  God 
at  the  beginning  through  Him  created  and  adorned  all 
things  "  (Ap.  ii.  6).  "  Not  a  perfect  Sonj  without  the  flesh, 
Ihough  a  perfect  Word,"  says  Hippolytus,  "  being  the  Only- 
fcegottcn,  .  .  .  whom  God  called  '  Son,'  because  He  was  to 
become  such"  (contr.  Noet.  15  ).  .  .  "There  was  a  time 
■when  the  Son  was  not,"  says  TertuUian  (adv.  Herm,  3); 
■'He  proceeds  unto  a  birth,"  says  Zeno,  ^*Ht  who  was, 
liefore  He  was  born  "  (Tract,  ii.  3). 

There  can  be  no  doubt  what  the  literal  sense  is  of  words 
these,  and  that  in  consequence  they  require  some 
immodation  in  order  to  reconcile  them  with  the  received 
itholic  teacliing  de  Deo  and  de  SS.  Trimtate.  It  is  the 
object  of  Bull,  as  of  others  after  him,  to  effect  this  recon- 
ciliation. He  thinks  it  a  plain  duty  both  to  the  authors  in 
question  and  to  the  Church,  at  whatever  cost,  to  reconcile 
Ihcir  statements  in  all  respects  with  the  orthodox  belief; 
but  unless  he  had  felt  it  a  duty,  I  do  not  think  he  1; 



418  Appendix. 

have  ventured  upon  it.  He  would  have  taken  them  in  theii:  -*^  -^^ 
literal  sense,  had  he  found  them  in  the  writing  of  som^^  -^^ 
Puritan  or  Quaker.  If  so,  his  defence  of  them  is  but  a^s-  3- 
confirmation  of  a  foregone  conclusion ;  he  starts  with  the^^  ^^ 
assumption  that  the  words  of  the  early  writers  cannot  meaner"*:  n 
what  they  naturally  do  mean ;  and,  though  this  bias  is^^  -*s 
worthy  of  all  respect,  still  the  fact  that  it  exists  is  a  call  o 
us  to  examine  closely  arguments  which  without  it  woul 
not  have  been  used.  And  what  I  have  said  of  Bull  applies  ^^^-s 
of  course  to  others,  such  as  Maran  and  the  Ballerini,  who 
have  followed  in  his  track. 

Bull  then  maintains  that  the  terms  "  generation,"  "  birth,*' 
and  the  like,  which  occur  in  the  passages  of  the  authors  in 
question,  must  be  accommodated  to  a  literary  sense,  that  is, 
taken  figuratively,  or  impropri^^  to  mean  merely  our  Lord's 
going  forth  to  create,  and  the  great  manifestation  of  the  Son- 
ship  made  in  and  to  the  universe  at  its  creation ;  and  on 
these  grounds  : — i.  The  terms  used  cannot  be  taken  literally, 
from  the  fact  that  in  those  very  passages,  or  at  least  in  other 
passages  of  the  same  authors.  His  co-eternity  with  the  Father 
is  expressly  affirmed.  2.  And  they  must  be  taken  figura- 
tively, first,  because  in  those  passages  they  actually  stand 
in  connexion  with  mention  of  His  forthcoming  or  mission 
to  create ;  and  next,  because  unsuspected  authors,  such  as 
Athanasius,  distinctly  connect  His  creative  office  with  His 
title  of  "  First-born,"  which  belongs  to  His  nature. 

Now  I  do  not  think  these  arguments  will  stand  ;  as  to  the 
negative  argument,  it  is  true  that  the  Fathers,  who  speak  of 
the  gennesis  as  having  a  relation  to  time  and  to  creation,  do 
in  the  same  passages  or  elsewhere  speak  of  the  eternity  of 
the  Word.  Doubtless ;  but  no  one  says  that  these  Fathers 
deny  His  eternity,  as  the  Word,  but  His  eternity  as  the  Son, 
Bull  ought  to  bring  passages  in  which  they  declare  the  Son 
and  His  gennesis  to  be  eternal. 

As  to  the  positive  argument,  if  they  recognized,  as  he  thinks, 



any  ^rM/KsiJ  besides  that  which  liad  a  relation  to  creation,  and 
wiiich  he  maintains  to  be  only  figuratively  a  gennms,  viz.  an 
eternal  gtnnesis  from  the  substance  of  the  Father,  why  do 
they  not  say  so?  do  they  ever  compare  and  contrast  the 
hvo  births  with  each  other?  do  they  ever  recognize  them 
as  two,  one  real  and  eternal,  the  other  just  before  time ;  the 
one  proper,  the  other  metaphorical?  We  know  they  held 
a.gennesis  in  order  to  creation,  or  with  a  relation  to  time; 
what  reason  have  we  for  holding  that  they  held  any  other  ? 
and  what  reason  for  saying  that  the  gmmsis  which  they 
connect  with  creation  was  not  in  their  minds  a  real  geanests, 
that  is,  such  agentusis  as  we  all  now  hold,  all  but,  as  they 
expressly  state,  its  not  being  from  eternity? 

In  other  words,  what  reason  have  we  for  saying  that  the 
term  gennesis  is  figurative  in  their  use  of  it  ?  It  is  true 
indeed  that  both  the  Son's  gennesis  and  also  His  forthcoming, 
mission,  or  manifestation  are  sometimes  mentioned  together 
by  these  writers  in  the  same  sentence ;  but  that  does  not  prove 
ihey  are  not  in  their  minds  separate  Divine  acts ;  for  His  crea- 
tion of  the  world  is  mentioned  in  such  passages  too,  and  as 
His  creation  of  the  world  is  not  His  mission,  therefore  His 
mission  need  not  be  His  ^eniusis ;  and  again,  as  His  crea- 
ting is  (in  their  teaching)  concurrent  with  His  mission,  so 
His  mission  may  (in  their  teaching)  be  concurrent  with  His 

Nor  ate  such  expositions  of  the  title  "  First-born  of  crea- 
tion," as  Athanasius  has  so  beautifully  given  us,  to  the  purpose 
of  Bull.  Bull  takes  it  to  show  that  ^nnais  may  be  con-  J 
sidered  to  be  a  mission  or  forthcoming ;  whereas  Athanasius 
does  not  mean  by  the  "  First-bom  "  any  gennesis  of  our  Lord 
trom  the  Father  at  all,  but  he  simply  means  His  coming  to 
ihe  creature,  that  is,  His  exalting  the  creature  into  a  Divine 
wnshipbyaunion  with  His  own  Sonship.  The  ff^rrf applies 
His  own  Sonship  to  the  creation,  and  makes  Himself,  who  is 
the  real  Son,  the  first  and  the  representative  of  a  family  of 
E   E   2 

420  Appendix^ 

adopted  sons ;  ^  the  term  expresses  a  relation,  not  towards 
God,  but  towards  the  creature.  This  Athanasius  says  ex- 
pressly :  "  It  is  nowhere  written  [of  the  Son]  in  the  Scrip- 
tures, '  the  First-born  of  God^  nor  '  the  creature  of  God^  but 
it  is  *  Only-begotten,'  and  '  Son,'  and  *  Word,'  and  *  Wisdom,' 
that  have  relation  to  the  Father.  The  same  cannot  be  both 
Only-begotten  and  First-bom,  except  in  different  relations, 
— Only-begotten  because  of  His  gennesis,  First-bom  because 
of  His  condescension."  Thus  Athanasius  expressly  denies 
that,  because  our  Lord  is  First-bom  at  and  to  the  creation, 
therefore  He  can  be  said  to  be  begotten  at  the  creation ; 
"  Only-begotten  "  is  internal  to  the  Divine  Essence  ;  "  First- 
born "  external  to  It :  the  one  is  a  word  of  nature,  the  other, 
of  office.  If  then  the  authors,  whom  Bull  is  defending, 
had  wished  to  express  a  figurative  gemjesis,  they  would 
always  have  used  the  word  "  First-bom,"  never  "  Only- 
begotten  :"  and  never  have  associated  the  generation  from 
the  Father  with  the  coming  forth  to  create.  It  is  true  they 
sometimes  associate  the  Word's  creative  office  with  the  term 
"  First-born ;"  but  they  also  associate  it  with  "  Only-begotten." 
There  seems  no  reason  then  why  the  words  of  Theophilus, 
Hippolytus,  and  the  rest  should  not  be  taken  in  their  obvious 
sense ;  and  so  far  I  agree  with  Petavius  against  Bull,  Fabri- 
cius,  Maran,  the  Ballerini,  and  Routh.  But,  tliis  being 
granted,  still  I  am  not  disposed  to  follow  Petavius  in  his 
severe  criticism  upon  those  Fathers,  and  for  the  following 
reasons : — 

1.  They  considered  the  "  Theos  Logos  "  to  be  really  dis- 
tinct from  God,  (that  is,  the  Father,)  not  a  mere  attribute, 
quality,  or  power,  as  the  Sabellians  did,  and  do. 

2.  They  considered  Him  to  be  distinct  from  God  from 

3.  Since,  as  Dionysius  says,  "He  who  speaks  is  father 
of  his  words,"  they  considered  the  Logos  always  to  be  of  the 
nature  oi  a  Son.     Hence  Zeno  says  He  was  from  everlasting 

» [(1890,  AJif) ;  adopted,  that  is,  through  the  grace  of  Him,  who  is  in 
^is  nature,  from  otcrnity,  thc.Onc  and  Only  Son  of  God.] 



"   Villi  D 

sine  affedii,"  and  Hippolytus,  Te'Atios  Xoyor,  Siv 

4.  They  considered,  to  use  the  Scripture  term,  that  He 
^'as  "in  uiero  Patris"  before  His  actual  gmnesis.  Victo- 
*'i.iius  applies  the  word  "  fetus  "  to  Him ;  "  Non  enim  fcetus 
Ion  est  ante  partum  ;  sed  in  occulto  est ;  generatio  est 
ttianifestatio  "  (apud  Gallaud,  v.  8,  p.  146,001.3).  Zenosays 
that  He  "  prodivit  ex  ore  Dei  ut  renim  naturam  fingeret," 
'*  cordis  ejus  nobilis  inquilinus,"  and  was  embraced  by  the 
Father  "  profundo  sues  sacrE  mentis  arcaiio  sine  reveiamine." 

5.  Hippojytus  even  considered  that  the  perfection  of  His 
Sonship  was  not  attained  till  His  incarnation,  reAeios  Aoyos 
vjIos  aTtXijs;  but  cven  he  recognized  the  identity  of  the  Son 
with  the  Logos. 

6.  Furtlier,  this  change  of  the  Logos  into  the  Son  was 
internal  to  the  Divine  Mind,  TcrtulJ.  adv.  Prax.  8,  contr. 
Hermog.  18,  and  therefore  was  unlike  the  probole  oi  the 


7.  Such  an  opinion  was  not  only  not  inconsistent  with  the 
_^  *msiision,  but  implied  it.  It  took  for  granted  that  the 
Son  was  from  the  substance  of  the  Father,  and  con  substantial 
■vith  Him ;  though  it  implied  a  very  defective  view  of  the 
immutability  and  simplicity  of  the  Divine  Essence. 

5.  Accordingly,  though  I  cannot  allow  that  it  was  actually 
protected  at  the  Council  by  the  anathema  on  those  who  said 
that  our  Lord  "'  was  not  before  He  was  bom,"  at  least  it  was 
passed  over  on  an  occasion  when  the  Arian  error  had  to  be 

lefinitively  reprobated. 
This  may  be  said  in  its  favour :  but  then,  on  the  other 

I.  It  seriously  compromised,  as  I  have  said,  the  simplicity 
id  immutability  of  the  Divine  Essence. 

It  could  be  resolved,  wilb  very  little  alteration,  into 
imi-Aiianism  on  the  one  hand,  or  into  Sabellianism  onth^ 



3.  On  this  account  it  had  all  along  been  resisted  with 
definiteness  and  earnestness bytheFathers  of  theAlexandnan 
School,  by  whom  finally  it  was  eradicated.      Origen  urges  the 
doctrine  of  the  aiLytnUi  "Perfect  Son  from  Perfect  Father," 
says  Gregory  Thaum at urgus  in  his  creed;  "Tlie  Father  being 
everiasting  tlie  Son  is  everlasting,"  says  Dionysius;  "The 
Father,"  says  Alexander,  "  is  ever  Father  of  the  ever-present 
Son,"  and  Athanasius  reprobates  the  Xoyo«  hi  t»  BtZ  oreX^ 
ytiTTjflfis  T«\tios  (Oral.  iv.  11).     Hence  Gregory  Nazianzcn     4 
in  like  manner  conderans  the  artXii  trpoTtpoi-,  iira  rcXtu*   -^^ 
uxnrtp   vo/tos    rj/iirtpo^  ytvtVtdu   (Orat.    XX.    9,    fin.).       And  .^^ 
at  length  it  was  classed,  and  duly,  among  the  heresies.      - 
"  Alia  (hEecesis),"  says  Augustine,  "  sempitemfe  natum  non  in — .^ 
telligens  Filium.putat  illam  nativitatem  sumpsisse  ^  tempor^^^ 
initium  ;  et  tamen  volens  coKtemum  Patri  FiUlim  confitenaf  _ 
apud  ilium  fuisse,  antequim  de  illo  nasceretur,  existimat ;  ho-^^ 
est,  semper  eum  fuisse,  vcruntamen  semper  eum  Filiuni  ao-rj 
fuisse,  sed  ex  quo  de  illo  natus  est,  Filium  esse  ccepissc  "* 
(Hxr.  50). 

However,  this  subject  should  be  treated  at  greater  leogtfi 
that  I  can  allow  it  here.     (Vide  Tracts  Theol.  and  Eeclcsy 

N.B. — The  above  addition  (page  420)  is  in  conseqoemc 
of  a  misunderstanding,  which  leads  me  to  repeat,  nu», 
1890,  as  ever,  that  what  I  have  here  written  is  subject  la 
the  judgment  of  Holy  Church. 



(  Fide  supra,  /.  3 1 4-) 
1.1).  351.     Cot^ession  against  P/ioHnus. 
(First  Sirmian  Council). 

Bfms  Confession  was  published  at  a  Council  of  Eastern 
Bishops  (Coustant.  in  Hi!,  p.  1174,  Note  1 ),  and  was  drawn 
up  by  the  whole  body,  Hil.  de  Syn.  37  {according  to  Sir- 
mond.  Diatr.  i.  Sirm,  p.  366,  Petavius  de  Trin.  i.  9.  §  8. 
Animadv.  in  Epiph.  p.  318  init,  and  Coustant.  in  Hil.  1.  c) ; 
cr  by  Basil  of  Ancyra  (as  Valesius  conjectures  in  Soz.  iv. 
23,  and  Larroquanus,  de  Liberio,  p.  147);  or  by  Mark  of 
Arethusa,  Socr,  ii.  30,  but  Socrates,  it  is  considered,  con- 
fuses together  the  dates  of  the  different  Confessions,  and 
this  ascription  is  part  of  his  mistake  (vide  Vales,  in  loc, 
Coustant  in  HiL  deSyn.  1.  c.j  Petav.  Animad.  in  Epiph.  I.e.). 
It  was  written  in  Greek. 

Til!  Petavius,  Socrates  was  generally  followed  in  ascribing 
all  lliree  Sirmian  Confessions  to  tliis  one  Council,  though  at 
tlie  same  time  he  was  generally  considered  mistaken  as  to 
the  year.  E.  g.  Baronius  places  them  all  in  357.  Sirmond 
defended  Baronius  against  Petavius  (though  in  Facund.  x.  6, 
Note  c,  he  agrees  irith  Petavius) ;  and,  assigning  the  third 
Confession  to  359,  adopted  the  improbable  conjecture  of  two 
Councils,  the  one  Catholic  and  the  other  Arian,  held  at 
Siimium  at  the  same  time,  putting  forth  respectively  the 
first  and  second  Creeds,  somewhat  after  the  manner  of  the 
contemporary  rival   Councils   of    Sardica.      Pagi.    Natalis 


L  of  Alhan 


424  Appendix. 

Alexander,  Valesius,  de  Marca,  Tilleraont,  S.  Basnage,  Mont 
faucon,   Coustant,   Larroquanus    agree    with    Petavius    in 
placing  the  Council,  at  which  Photinus  was  deposed  and 
the  Confession  published,  in  a.d.  351.     Mansi  dates  it  at 


Gothofred  considers  that  there  were  two  or  three  successive 

Councils  at  Sirmiura,  between  a.d.  357  and  359  (in  Philo- 
storg.  Index,  pp.  74,  75 ;  Dissert,  pp.  200.  211 — 214).  Peta- 
vius, and  Tillemont,  speak  of  three  Councils  or  Conferences 
held  in  a.d.  351.  357,  and  359.  Mansi,  of  three  in  358, 
359 ;  Zaccaria  (Dissert.  8)  makes  in  all  five,  349  (in  which 
Photinus  was  condemned ),  351;  357  (in  which  Hosius 
lapsed);  357  (foUo^ving  Valesius  and  Pagi);  and  359. 
Mamachi  makes  three,  351.  357.  359;  Basnage  four,  351. 


This  was  the  Confession  which  Pope  Liberius  signed, 

according  to  Baronius,  Natalis  Alexander,  and  Coustant  in 

Hil.    Note   n.  pp.   1335 — 1337,   and  as  Tillemont  thinks 

probable.     Zaccaria  says  it  is  the  general  opinion,  in  which 

he  is  willing  to  concur  (p.  18). 

It  would  appear  (Ath.  Tr.  p.  114,  b.)  that  Photinus  was 
condemned  at  Antioch  in  the  Macrostich,  a.d.  345  ;  at  Sar- 
dica,  347 ;  at  Milan,  348 ;  and  at  his  own  See,  Sirmium, 
351,  if  not  there,  in  349  also  ; — however,  as  this  is  an  intri- 
cate point  on  which  there  is  considerable  difference  of 
opinion  among  critics,  it  may  be  advisable  to  state  here 
the  dates  of  his  condemnation  as  they  are  determined  by 
various  writers. 

Petavius  (de  Photino  Haeretico,  i)  enumerates  in  all  five 
condemnations  : — i.  at  Constantinople,  a.d.  336,  when  Mar- 
cellus  was  deposed.  2.  At  Sardica,  a.d.  347.  3.  At  Milan, 
A.D.  347.  4.  At  Sirmium,  a.d.  349.  5.  At  Sirmium,  when 
he  was  deposed,  a.d.  351.  Of  these  the  4th  and  5th  were 
first  brought  to  light  by  Petavius.  who  omits  mention  of  the 
Macrosticli  in  345. 

Appendix.  425 

yetavius  is  followed  fay  Natalis  Alexander,  Montfaucon 
^L  Athan.),  and  Tilleinoiit;  and  by  De  Marca  (  Diss,  de 
lemp.  Syn.  Sirm.)  and  S.  Basmge  ('\.nm.les),  and  Valesius 
(b  Theod,  Hist,  il  16.  p.  23 ;  Socr  11  20),  as  regards  the 
Council  of  Milan,  except  that  Valesius  places  it  with  Sir- 
mond  in  346  ;  but  for  the  Council  of  Sirraium  in  349,  they 
substitute  a  Council  of  Rome  of  the  same  date,  while  De 
Marca  considers  Photinus  condemned  again  in  the  Eusebian 
Council  of  Milan  in  355.  De  la  Roque,  on  the  other  hand 
(LaiToquan.  Dissert  de  Photino  Hser.),  considers  that  Pho- 
tinus was  condemned,  1.  in  the  Macrostich,  344  [345].  a. 
At  Sardica,  347.  3.  At  Milan,  348.  4.  At  Sirmium,  35a 
J.     At  Sirmium,  351.     Zaccaria,  besides  345  and  347;  at 

Milan,  347;  at  Sirmiumj 349 j  at  Sirmium  again,  351,  when 

he  was  deposed. 

Petavius  seems  to  stand  alone  in  assigning  to  the  Council 

of  Constantinople,  336,  his  first  condemnation. 

^^V9.  A.D.  357.      The  Blasph(tny  of  Poiamius  and  Hosius 
(Second  SJnnian). 

Hilary  calls  it  by  the  above  title,  de  Syn.  11 ;  vide  also 
Son.  iv.  12,  p.  554.  He  seems  also  to  mean  it  by  the 
"blasphemia  Ursacii  et  Valentis,  contr.  Const.  26. 

This  Confession  was  the  first  overt  act  of  disunion  betweea 
-Arians  and  Semi-Arians. 

Sirmond,  De  Marca,  and  Valesius  ( in  Socr.  ii  30),  after 
Thoebadius,  think  it  put  forth  by  a  Council ;  rather,  at  a 
Conference  of  a  few  leading  Arians  about  Constantius,  who 
seems  to  have  been  present ;  e.  g.  Ursaciiis,  Valens,  and 
Germinius.     Soz.  iv.  iz.     Vide  also  Hil.  Fragm.  vi.  7. 

It  was  written  in  Latin,  Socr.  ii.  30,  Potaraius  wrote 
"erv  barbarous  Latin,  judging  from  the  Tract  ascribed  to 
him  lu  '>^;h«l:,  Spicileg.  t.  3.  p.  299,  unless  it  be  a  trans*  1 

426  Appendix. 

lation  from  the  Greek,  vide  also  Galland.  Bibl.  t  v.  p.  9 
Petavius  thinks  the  Creed  not  written,  but  merely  subscribe-- 
by  Potamius  (de  Trin.  i.  9.  §  8) ;  and  Constant  (in  Hil. 
1155,  Note  f)  that  it  was  written  by  Ursacius,  Valens,  an 
Potamius.     It  is  remarkable  that  the  Greek  in  Athanasius  i^ 
clearer  than  the  original. 

This  at  first  sight  is  the  Creed  which  Liberius  sign 
because  S.  Hilary  speaks  of  the  latter  as  "  perfidia  Ariana,' 
Fragm.  6.  Blondel  (Prim,  dans  I'Eglise,  p.  484),  Larr 
quanus,  &c.,  are  of  this  opinion.  And  the  Roman  Breviary, 
Ed.  Ven.  1482,  and  Ed.  Par.  1543,  in  the  Service  for  S. 
Eusebius  of  Rome,  August.  14,  says  that  "  Pope  Liberius 
consented  to  the  Arian  misbelief,"  Launnoi,  Ep.  v.  9.  c.  13. 
Auxilius  says  the  same,  Ibid.  vi.  14.  Animadv.  5.  n.  18. 
Petavius  grants  that  it  must  be  this,  if  any  of  the  three 
Sirmian  (Animadv.  in  Epiph.  p.  316),  but  we  shall  see  his 
own  opinion  presently.  Zaccaria  says  that  Hosius  signed 
it,  but  not  Liberius  ( Diss.  8.  p.  20,  Diss.  7).  Zaccaria 
seems  also  to  consider  that  there  was  another  Council 
or  Conference  at  Sirmium  this  same  year,  and  it  was  at  this 
Conference  that  Liberius  subscribed  "  formulae,  quae  contra 
Photinum  Sirmii  edita  fuerat,  primae  scilicet  Sirmiensi,  in 
unum  cum  Antiochensi  (against  Paul  of  Samosata,  also  the 
creed  of  the  Dedication)  libellum  conjectae."  Vide  infra. 
He  says  he  subscribed  it  "  iterum,"  the  first  time  being  in 

3.  A.D.  357.     The  foregoing  interpolated, 

A  creed  was  sent  into  the  East  in  Hosius's  name,  Epiph. 
Hcer.  73.  14.  Soz.  iv.  15,  p.  558,  of  an  Anomoean  character, 
which  the  "blasphemia"  was  not  And  St  Hilary  may 
allude  to  this  when  he  speaks  of  the  "  deliramenta  Osii,  et 
incrcmaita  Ursacii  et  Valenlis,"  contr.   Const   23.      An 

Appendix.  427 

lomoean  Council  of  Antioch  under  Eudoxius  of  this  date, 
*^kes  acknowledgments  to  Ursacius,  Valens,  and  Germinius, 
^02.  iv.  12  fin.  as  being  agents  in  the  Arianizing  of  the 

Petavius  and  Tillemont  consider  this  Confession  to  be 
'tie  "  blasphemia "  interpolated.  Petavius  throws  out  a 
tiirther  conjecture,  which  seems  gratuitous,  that  the  whole 
kA  the  latter  part  of  the  Creed  is  a  later  addition,  and 
that  Liberius  only  signed  the  former  part  Animadv.  in 
Epiph.  p.  316. 

4.  A.D.  358.     The  Ancyrene  Anaihemas, 

The  Semi-Arian  party  had  met  in  Council  at  Ancyra  in 
the  early  spring  of  358  to  protest  against  the  "  blasphemia," 
and  that  with  some  kind  of  correspondence  with  the  Gallic 
Bishops  who  had  just  condemned  it,  Phoebadius  of  Agen 
writing  a  Tract  against  it,  which  is  still  extant.  They  had 
drawn  up  and  signed,  besides  a  Synodal  Letter,  eighteen 
anathemas,  the  last  against  the  "  Consubstantial."  These, 
except  the  last,  or  the  last  six,  they  submitted  at  the  end  of 
May  to  the  Emperor  who  was  again  at  Sirmium.  Basil, 
Eustathius,  Eleusius,  and  another  formed  the  deputation ; 
and  their  influence  persuaded  Constantius  to  accept  the 
Anathemas,  and  even  to  oblige  the  party  of  Valens,  at 
whose  "  blasphemia "  they  were  levelled,  to  recant  and 
subscribe  them. 

5.  A.D.  358.     Semi-Arian  Digest  of  Three  Confessian^. 

The  Semi-Arian  Bishops,  pursuing  their  advantage,  com- 
posed a  Creed  out  of  three,  that  of  the  Dedication,  the  first 
Sirmian,  and  the  Creed  of  Antioch  against  Paul,  264 — 270, 
in  which  the  "  Consubstantial "  is  said  to  have  been  omitted 
or  forbidden,  Soz.  iv.  15.      This  Confession  was  imposed 

428  Appendix. 

by  Imperial  authority  on  the  Arian  party,  who  signed 
So  did  Liberius,  Soz.  ibid.  Hil.  Fragm.  vi.  6,  7  ;  and  Petavi 
considers  that  this  is  the  subscription  by  which  he  laps 
de  Trin.  i.  9.  §  5,  Animadv.  in  Epiph.  p.  316,  and  so  Zai 
caria,  as  above,  and  S.  Basnage,  in  Ann.  358.  13. 

It  is  a  point  of  controversy  whether  or  not  the  Ariaa 
at  this  time  suppressed  the  "  blasphemia."  Socrates  an 
Sozomen  say  that  they  made  an  attempt  to  recall  the  copi 
they  had  issued,  and  even  obtained  an  edict  from  the  Em- 
peror for  this  purpose,  but  without  avail.  Socr.  ii.  30  fin— 
Soz.  iv.  6,  p.  543. 

Athanasius,  on  the  other  hand,  de  Syn.  29,  relates  this 
substance  of  the  third  Confession  of  Sirmium,  not  of 
"  blasphemia  "  or  second. 

Tillemont  follows  Socrates  and  Sozomen,  considering  thai 
Basil's  influence  with  the  Emperor  enabled  him  now  to 
insist  on  a  retraction  of  the  "  blasphemia."  And  he  argues 
that  Germinius  in  366,  being  suspected  of  orthodoxy,  and 
obliged  to  make  profession  of  heresy,  was  referred  by  his 
party  to  the  formulary  of  Ariminum,  no  notice  being  taken 
of  the  "  blasphemia,"  which  looks  as  if  it  were  suppressed ; 
whereas  Germinius  himself  appeals  to  the  third  Sirmian, 
which  is  a  proof  that  it  was  not  suppressed.  HiL  Fragm. 
15.  Coustant,  in  Hil.  contr.  Const.  26,  though  he  does 
not  adopt  the  opinion  himself,  observes,  that  the  charge 
brought  against  Basil,  Soz.  iv.  132,  Hil.  Lc,  by  the  Acacians, 
of  persuading  the  Africans  against  the  second  Surmian  is  an 
evidence  of  a  great  effort  on  his  part,  at  a  time  when  he  had 
the  Court  with  him,  to  suppress  it  We  have  just  seen 
Basil  uniting  with  the  Gallic  Bishops  against  it 

6.  A.D.  359.   The  Confession  with  a  date 
(Third  Sirmian), 

The  Serai- Arians,  with  the  hope  of  striking  a  further  blow 


^heii'  opponents  by  a  judgment  against  the  Anoraaans, 
Soz.  !v.  iG  init.,  seem  to  have  suggested  a  general  Council, 
which  ullimatdy  became  the  Councils  of  Seleucia  and  Ari- 
minum.  If  this  was  their  measure,  they  were  singularly 
out-manceuvred  by  the  party  of  Acacius  and  Valens,  as  may 
be  seen  in  Athanasius's  de  Synodis.  A  preparatory  Con- 
ference was  held  at  Sirmiura  at  the  end  of  May  in  this  year, 
in  which  the  Creed  was  determined  which  should  be  laid 
before  the  great  Councils  then  assembling.  Basil  and  Mark 
were  the  chief  Semi  \rians  present,  and  in  the  event  became 
committed  to  an  almost  \rnn  Confession.  Son.  iv.  16,  p. 
562.  It  was  fimlly  settled  on  the  E\e  of  Pentecost,  and 
riie  dispute  lasted  till  morning  Fpiph  Htcr.  73,  za.  Mark 
at  length  was  chosen  to  drw  it  up,  Soz.  iv.  23,  p.  573,  yet 
Valens  so  managed  that  Basil  could  not  sign  it  without 
an  explanation  It  was  written  in  Latin,  Socr.  il  30,  Soz, 
iv.  17,  p.  563.  Loustant,  ho\\ever,  in  Hi!,  p.  irja,  note  i., 
seems  to  consider  this  dispute  and  Mark's  confession  to 
belong  to  the  same  date  (May  22,)  in  the  foregoing  year  j 
but  p.  1363,  note  b,  he  'iccras  to  change  his  opinion. 

Petavius,  who,  Animadv.  in  Epiph.  p.  318,  follows  So- 
crates in  considering  that  tlie  second  Simiian  is  the  Confes- 
sion which  the  Arians  tried  to  suppress,  nevertheless,  de  Trin. 
i,  9,  5  8,  yields  to  the  testimony  of  Athanasius  in  behalf  of 
the  third,  attribufing  the  measure  to  their  dissatisfaction 
with  the  phrase  "Like  in  all  things,"  which  Constantius 
had  inserted,  and  with  Basil's  explanation  on  subscribing  it, 
and  to  the  hopes  of  publishing  a  bolder  creed  which  their 
increasing  influence  with  Constaurius  inspired.  He  does 
not  think  it  impossible,  however,  that  an  attempt  was  made 
to  suppress  both.  Coustant,  again,  in  Hil.  p.  1363,  note  b, 
asks  wAcn  it  could  be  that  tlie  Eusebians  attempted  to  sup- 
press the  second  Confession;  and  conjectures  that  the  ridicule 
which  followed  their  dating  of  the  third  and  their  wish  to 
get  rid  of  the  "  Like  in  al'  things,"  were  the  cause.=  of  ilieir 

430  Appendix. 

anxiety  about  it.  He  observes  too  with  considerable  specious- 
ness  that  Acacius's  Second  formulary  at  Seleucia  (Athanu 
de  Syn.  29),  and  the  Confession  of  Nice  (Ibid.  30),  resemble 
second  editions  of  the  third  Sirmian.  Valesius,  in  Socr.  iL 
30,  and  Montfaucon,  in  Athan.  Syn.  §  29,  take  the  same 

Pagi  in  Ann.  357.  n.  13,  supposes  that  the  third  Sirmian 
was  the  Creed  signed  by  Liberius.  Yet  Constant  in  Hil.  p. 
1335,  note  n,  speaking  of  Liberius's  "  perfidia  Ariana,"  as 
St.  Hilary  calls  it,  says,  "Solus  Valesius  existimat  tertiam 
[confessionem]  hie  memorari : "  whereas  Valesius,  making 
four,  not  to  say  five,  Sirmian  Creeds,  understands  Liberius 
to  have  signed,  not  the  third,  but  an  intermediate  one, 
between  the  second  and  third,  as  Petavius^  does,  in  Soz. 
iv.  15  and  16.  Moreover,  Pagi  fixes  the  date  as  a.d.  358 

This  Creed,  thus  drawn  up  by  a  Semi-Arian,  with  an 
Acacian  or  Arian  Appendix,  then  a  Semi-Arian  insertion,  and 
after  all  a  Semi-Arian  protest  on  subscription,  was  proposed 
at  Seleucia  by  Acacius,  Soz.  iv.  22,  and  at  Ariminum  by 
Valens,  Socr.  ii.  37,  p.  132. 

7.  A.D.  359.  Nicene  Edition  of  the  Third  Sirmian. 

The  third  Sirmian  was  rejected  both  at  Seleucia  and  Ari- 
minum ;  but  the  Eusebians,  dissolving  the  Council  of  Se- 
leucia, kept  the  Fathers  at  Ariminum  together  through  the 
summer  and  autumn.  Meanwhile  at  Nice  in  Thrace  they 
confirmed  the  third  Sirmian,  Socr.  ii.  37,  p.  141,  Theod 
Hist.  ii.  16,  with  the  additional  proscription  of  the  word 
hypostasis ;  apparently  lest  the  Latins  should  by  means  of  it 
evade  the  condemnation  of  the  "  consubstantial."  This 
Creed,  thus  altered,  was  ultimately  accepted  at  Ariminurn  ; 
and  was  confirmed  in  January  360  at  Constantinople ;  Socr. 
iL  41,  p.  163.     Soz.  iv.  24  init. 

Appendix.  43 1 

Liberius  retrieved  his  fault  on  this  occasion ;  for,  whatever 
7r2&  the  confession  he  had  signed,  he  now  refused  his  assent 
to  the  Ariminian,  and,  if  Socrates  is  to  be  trusted,  was 
banished  in  consequence,  Socr,  ii.  37,  p.  140* 

432  Appendix. 

NOTE  IV.  1 

THE  TERMS    tisia  AND   hypostasis^   AS   USED    IN   THE 


(  Vide  supra ^  p,  i86.^ 

I.  Even  before  we  take  into  account  the  effect  which  would 
naturally  be  produced  on  the  first  Christians  by  the  novelty 
and  mysteriousness  of  doctrines  which  depend  for  their 
reception  simply  upon  Revelation,  we  have  reason  to  antici- 
pate that  there  would  be  difficulties  and  mistakes  in  expres- 
sing them,  when  they  first  came  to  be  set  forth  by  unautho- 
ritative writers.  Even  in  secular  sciences,  inaccuracy  of 
thought  and  language  is  but  gradually  corrected ;  that  is, 
in  proportion  as  their  subject-matter  is  thoroughly  scruti- 
nized and  mastered  by  the  co-operation  of  many  independent 
intellects,  successively  engaged  upon  it  Thus,  for  instance, 
the  word  Person  requires  the  rejection  of  various  popular 
senses,  and  a  careful  definition,  before  it  can  serve  for  philo- 
sophical uses.  We  sometimes  use  it  for  an  individual  as 
contrasted  with  a  class  or  multitude,  as  when  we  speak  of 
having  "  personal  objections "  to  another  ;  sometimes  for 
the  body^  in  contrast  to  the  soul,  as  when  we  speak  of 
"  beauty  of  person."  We  sometimes  use  it  in  the  abstract, 
as  when  we  speak  of  another  as  "  insignificant  in  person ; " 
sometimes  in  the  concrete,  as  when  we  call  him  "  an  insig- 
nificant person."  How  divergent  in  meaning  are  the  deri- 
vatives, personable^  personalities^  personify^  personation^  per- 
sonage^ parsonage  I  This  variety  arises  partly  from  our  own 
carelessness,  partly  from  the    necessary  developments  of 

*  From  HcitAilaniU^  July,  1858. 

Appendix.  q33 

,  partly  from  tlie  exuberance  of  liutiiiin  thought, 
partly  from  the  defects  of  our  vernacular  tongue. 

Language  then  requires  to  be  refashioned  even  for  sciences 
which  are  based  on  the  senses  and  the  reason ;  but  much 
more  will  this  be  tlie  case,  when  we  are  concerned  witl) 
subject-matters,  of  which,  in  our  present  state,  we  cannot 
possibly  form  any  complete  or  consistent  conception,  such 
as  the  Catholic  doctrines  of  the  'frinity  and  Incarnation. 
Since  they  are  from  the  nature  of  the  case  above  our  intel- 
lectual reach,  and  were  unknown  till  the  preaching  of  Chris- 
tianity, they  required  on  their  first  promulgation  new  words, 
or  words  used  in  new  senses,  for  their  due  enunciation;  and, 
since  these  were  not  definitely  supplied  by  Scripture  or  by 
tradition,  nor,  for  centuries,  by  ecclesiastical  authority,  variety 
in  the  use,  and  confusion  in  the  apprehension  of  them,  were 
unavoidable  in  the  interval.  This  conclusion  is  necessarj% 
admitting  the  premisses,  antecedently  to  particular  instances 
in  prooC 

Moreover,  there  is  a  presumption  equally  strong,  that 
the  variety  and  confusion  that  I  have  anticipated,  would 
in  matter  of  fact  issue  here  or  there  in  actual  heterodoxy, 
as  often  as  the  language  of  theologians  «'as  misunderstood 
by  hearers  or  readers,  and  deductions  were  made  from  it 
which  the  teacher  did  not  intend.  Thus,  for  instance,  the 
word  Person,  used  in  the  doctrine  of  the  Holy  Trinity, 
"Would  on  first  hearmg  suggest  Tritheism  to  one  who  made 
llie  word  sjTionjmous  with  individual ;  and  Unitarianism 
*o  another,  who  accepted  it  in  the  classical  sense  of  a  mask 
«r  charade i: 

Even  to  this  da>  our  theological  language  is  (vanting  in 
■nccuracy ;  thus,  we  sometimes  speak  of  the  controversies 
<:oiiteniing  the  Puson  of  Christ,  when  we  mean  to  include 
;.  them  those  also  which  belong  to  the  two  natures  whidi 
j^redicated  of  Him. 
udced,  tlie  difficulties  of  forming  a  theological  phraseology 

434  Appendix. 

for  the  whole  of  Christendom  were  obviously  so  great,  thai 
we  need  not  wonder  at  the  reluctance  which  the  first  ag( 
of  Catholic  divines  showed  in  attempting  it,  even  apart  from 
the  obstacles  caused  by  the  distraction  and  isolation  of  the 
churches  in  times  of  persecution.  Not  only  had  the  words 
to  be  adjusted  and  explained  which  were  peculiar  to  different 
schools  or  traditional  in  different  places,  but  there  was  the 
formidable  necessit}'  of  creating  a  common  measure  between 
two,  or  rather  three  languages, — Latin,  Greek,  and  S)Tiac 
The  intellect  had  to  be  satisfied,  error  had  to  be  successfully 
excluded,  parties  the  most  contrary  to  each  other,  and  the 
most  obstinate,  had  to  be  convinced.  The  very  confidence 
which  would  be  felt  by  Christians  in  general  that  Apostolic 
truth  would  never  fail, — and  that  they  held  it  in  each 
locality  themselves  and  the  orhis  terrarum  with  them,  in 
spite  of  all  verbal  contrarieties, — ^would  indispose  them  to 
define  it,  till  definition  became  an  imperative  duty. 

2.  I  think  this  plain  from  the  nature  of  the  case;  and 
history  confirms  me  in  the  instance  of  the  celebrated  word 
homoilsion,  which,  as  one  of  the  first  and  most  necessary  steps, 
so  again  was  apparently  one  of  the  most  discouraging,  in  the 
attempt  to  give  a  scientific  expression  to  doctrine.  This 
formula,  as  Athanasius,  Hilary,  and  Basil  affirm,  had  been 
disowned,  as  savouring  of  heterodoxy,  by  the  great  Council 
of  Antioch  in  a.d.  264 — 269  ;  yet,  in  spite  of  this  disavowal 
on  the  part  of  Bishops  of  the  highest  authority,  it  was  im- 
posed on  all  the  faithful  to  the  end  of  time  in  the  Ecumenical 
Council  of  Nicaea,  a.d.  325,  as  the  one  and  only  safeguard, 
as  it  really  is,  of  orthodox  teaching.  The  misapprehensions 
and  protests  which,  after  such  antecedents,  its  adoption  occa- 
sioned for  many  years,  may  be  easily  imagined.  Though 
above  three  hundred  Bishops  had  accepted  it  at  Nicaea,  the 
great  body  of  the  Episcopate  in  the  next  generation  con- 
sidered it  inexpedient ;  and  Athanasius  himself,  whose  im- 
perishable name  is  bound  up  with  it,  showed  himself  most 

Appendix.  435 

Stious  in  pulting  it  forward,  though  he  knew  it  had  the 
sanction  of  a  General  Council.  Moreover,  the  word  does 
not  occur  in  the  Caiechests  of  St.  Cyril  of  Jerusalem,  a.d. 
347,  Dor  in  the  recantation  made  before  Pope  Julius  by 
Ursacius  and  Valens,  a.d.  349,  nor  in  the  cross-questionings 
to  which  St  Ambrose  subjected  Palladius  and  Secundiajius, 
A.D.  381.  At  Seleucia,  a.d.  359,  as  many  as  100  Eastern 
Bishops,  besides  the  Arian  party,  were  found  to  abandon  it, 
while  at  Ariminum  in  the  same  year  the  celebrated  scene 
took  place  of  400  Bishops  of  the  West  being  worried  and 
bicked  into  a  momentary  act  of  the  same  character.  They 
had  not  yet  got  it  deeply  fixed  into  their  minds,  as  a  sort 
of  first  principle,  that  to  abandon  the  formula  was  to  betray 
the  faith. 

T,.  This  disinclination  on  the  part  of  Catholics  to  dogmatic 
definitions  was  not  confined  to  the  instance  of  the //owfKJ'/l?;;. 
In  the  use  of  the  word  hypostasis,  a  variation  was  even 
allowed  by  the  authority  of  a  Council  [a.d.  362]  ;  and  the 
circumstances  under  wbicJi  it  was  allowed,  and  the  possi- 
bility of  allowing  it,  without  compromising  Catholic  truth, 
shall  here  be  considered. 

As  to  the  use  of  the  word.  At  least  in  the  West,  and 
in  St,  Athanasius's  day,  it  was  usual  to  speak  of  one 
hypostasis,  as  of  one  usia,  of  the  Divine  Nature,  Thus  tlie 
so-called  Sardican  Creed,  a.d.  347,  speaks  of  "  one  liypostasis, 
which  the  heretics  call  usia."  Theod.  Hist.  ii.  8;  the  Roman 
Council  under  Damasus,  A,d,  371,  says  that  the  Three 
Persons  are  of  the  same  /lypos/asisand  wia ;  and  the  Nicene 
Anathema  condemns  those  who  say  that  V-e  Son  "  came 
from  other  hypostasis  or  itsia."  Epiphanius  /oo  speaks  of 
"one  hypostasis,"  H(Er.  74,  4,  Amor.  6  (and  though  he 
has  the  hypostases,  Her.  6z,  3,  72,  i,  yet  he  is  shy  of  the 
plural,  and  prefers  "  the  hypostatic  Father,  the  liyfostatie 
Son,"  &C.,  ibid.  3  and  4,  Amor.  6  ;  and  rpt'o,  as  Ifier,  74,  4, 
irhere  he  says  "three  hypostatic  of  the  same  hypostasis;" 
F  F  2 


436  Appendix. 

vide  also   "  in  hypostasis  of   perfection,"    H(Br,   74,    w 
Amor.  7  et  alibi );  and  Cyril  of  Jerusalem  of  the  "  unifoi 
hypostasis'^  of  God,   Catech.  vi.   7,  vide  also  xvi.   12  anc 
xvii.  9  (though  the  word  may  be  construed  one  out  of  three 
in   Cat.  xi.  3 ) ;  and  Gregory  Nazianzen,   Orat.  xxviii,  9. 
where  he  is  speaking  as  a  Natural,  not  as  a  Christian  the( 

In  the  preceding  century  Gregory  Thaumaturgus  hac 
laid  it  down  that  the  Father  and  the  Son  were  in  hypostasisx^^s 
one,  and  the  Council  of  Antioch,  a.d.  264 — 269,  calls  th( 
Son  in  usia  and  hypostasis  God,  the  Son  of  God.  Routh, 
Jieliq.  t.  2,  p.  466.  Accordingly  Athanasius  expressly  tell 
us,  ^^  Hypostasis  is  usia,  and  means  nothing  else  but  avro  r^^'o 
6V,"  a^  Afros,  4.  Jerome  says  that  "  Tota  sajcularium  litte—  '^• 
rarum  schola  nihil  aliud  hypostasin  nisi  usiam  novit,''  "^  " 
Epist,  XV.  4  ;  Basil,  the  Semi-Arian,  that  "  the  Fathers  hav( 
called  hypostasis  usia^'  Epiph.  Hcer,  73,  12,  fin. 
Socrates  says  that  at  least  it  was  frequently  used  for  usia. 
when  it  had  entered  into  the  philosophical  schools.  HisiJ!'^^ 
ni.  7. 

On  the  other  hand  the  Alexandrians,  Origen  (in  yban^  — 
ii.   6  et  alibi),  Ammonius  (ap.    Caten.  in  Joan.  x.  30,  i: 
genuine),  Dionysius  (ap.  Basil  de  Sp.  S.  n.  72),  and  Alex- 
ander (ap.  Theod.  Hist.  i.  4),  speak  of  more  hypostases  thj 
one  in  the  Divine  Nature,  that  is,  of  Three ;  and  apparently- 
v^rithout  the  support  of  the  divines  of  any  other  school^ 
unless  Eusebius,  who  is  half  an  Alexandrian,  be  an  excep- 
tion.    Going  down  beyond  the  middle  of  the  fourth  century, 
we  find  the  Alexandrian  Didymus  committing  himself  to 
bold  and  strong  enunciation  of  the  Three  hypostases,  (e.g.  d< 
Trin.  i.  18,  &c.),  which  is  almost  without  a  parallel  in  patris- 
tical  literature. 

It  was  under  these  circumstances  that  the   Council  o: 
Alexandria  in  a.d.  362,  to  which  I  have  already  referred  ^ 
a  Council  in  which  Athanasius  and  Eusebius  of  Vercellac^ 

r-      -  ■■} 

Appendix.  437 

e  the  chief  actors,  determined  to  leave  tlie  sense  and  use 
of  the  word  open,  so  that,  according  to  the  custom  of  their 
own  church  or  scliool,  Catholics  might  freely  speak  of  three 
Aypesiases  or  of  one. 

Thus  we  are  brought  to  the  practice  of  Athe-iasius  him- 
selt  It  is  remarkable  that  he  should  so  far  innovate  on 
the  custom  of  his  oim  Church,  as  to  use  the  word  in  each  of 
these  two  applications  of  it.  In  his  In  illud  Omnia  he 
speaks  of  "  the  three  perfect  Hypostases."  On  the  other 
hand,  he  makes  ««a  and  hypostasis  synonymous  in  Oral. 
iii.  65,  66,  Oral.  iv.  1  and  33  fin. 

There  is  something  more  remarkable  still  in  this  iimo- 
vation.  Alejtander,  his  immediate  predecessor  and  master, 
published,  a.d.  320 — 324,  two  forma!  letters  against  Arius, 
one  addressed  to  his  namesake  of  Constantinople,  the  other 
encyclical.  It  is  scarcely  possible  to  doubt  that  the  latter 
was  written  by  Athanasius;  it  is  so  unlike  the  former  in 
style  and  diction,  so  hke  tlie  \vritlngs  of  Athanasitis.  Now 
it  is  observable  that  in  the  former  the  word  hypostasis  occurs 
in  its  Alexandrian  sense  at  least  five  times ;  in  the  latter, 
which  I  attribute  to  Athanasius,  it  is  dropped,  and  mia  is 
introduced,  which  is  absent  from  the  former.  Tjiat  is, 
Athanasius  has,  on  this  supposition,  when  writing  in  his 
Bishop's  name  a  formal  document,  pointedly  innovated  on 
his  Bishop's  theological  language,  and  that  the  received 
language  of  his  own  Church,  I  am  not  supposing  he  did 
this  witliout  Alexander's  sanction.  Indeed  the  character 
of  the  Arian  polemic  would  naturally  lead  Alexander,  as  well 
as  Athanasius,  to  be  suspicious  of  their  omti  formiila  of  the 
"Three  Hypostases"  which  Ariauism  was  using  against 
them  ;  and  the  latter  would  be  confirmed  in  this  feeling  by 
his  subsequent  familiarity  with  Latin  theolo;;^,  and  the 
usage  of  the  Holy  See,  which,  under  Pope  Daniasus,  as  we 
have  seen,  a.d.  371,  spoke  of  one  hypostasis,  and  in  the  pre- 
vious century,  a.d.   260,  protested  by  antielpation  in  the 


438  Appendix, 

person  of  Pope  Dionysius  against  the  use,  which  might 
made  in  the  hands  of  enemies,  of  the  formula  of  the  Thre 
Hypostases,    Still  it  is  undeniable  that  Athanasius  does  at 
least  once  speak  of  Three,  though  his  practice  is  to  dispense 
with  the  word  and  to  use  others  instead  of  it 

4.  Now  then  we  come  to  the  explanation  of  this  difference 
of  usage  in  the  application  of  the  word.     It  is  difficult  to 
believe  that  so  accurate  a  thinker  as  Athanasius  really  used 
an  important  term  in  two  distinct,  nay  contrasted  senses; 
and  I  cannot  but  question  the  fact,  so  commonly  taken  for 
granted,  that  the  divines  of  the  beginning  of  the  fourth 
century  had  appropriated  any  word  whatever  definitely  to 
express  either  the  idea  of  Person  as  contrasted  with  that  of 
Essence^  or  of  Essetue  as  contrasted  with  Person.     I  alto- 
gether doubt  whether  we  are  correct  in  sa)dng  that  they 
meant  by  hypostasis,  in  one  country  Person,  in  another-r:*:  r 
Essence,      I   think   such  propositions  should  be   carefuUy^^^^iy 
proved,  instead  of  being  taken  for  granted,  as  at  present  is^^  -*s 
the  case.     Meanwhile,  I  have  an  hypothesis  of  my  own.  —  -^^• 
I  think  they  used  the  word  both  in  East  and  West  in-^""^-^ 
one  and  the  same  substantial  sense;  with  some  accidentals' -^^^^ 
variation  or  latitude  indeed,  but  that  of  so  slight  a  character,^  "^  "^> 
as  would  admit  of  Athanasius,  or  any  one  else,  speaking  0^  <z^o\ 
one  hypostasis  or  three,  without  any  violence  to  that  sense^^^^* 
which  remained  on  the  whole  one  and  the  same.    What  this^-^  ^^ 
sense  is  I  proceed  to  explain  : — 

The  school-men  are  known  to  have  insisted  with  greats -^^^^ 
earnestness  on  the  numerical  unity  of  the  Divine  Being ;  eachM^^^ 
of  the  three  Divine  Persons  being  one  and  the  same  God,, 
unicus,  singularis,  et  totus  Deus.     In  this,  however,  they  di< 
but  follow  the  recorded  doctrine  of  the  Western  theologians- 
of  the  fifth  century,  as  I  suppose  will  be  allowed  by  critics 
generally.     So  forcible  is  St.  Austin  upon  the  strict  unity  of 
God,  that  he  even  thinks  it  necessary  to  caution  his  readers 
lest  they  should  suppose  that  he  could  allow  them  to  speak  oT 

One  Ptrson  as  well  as  of  Three  in  tlie  Divine  nature  de  Irin., 
vii.  II.  Again,  in  the  (so-talled)  Athanasian  Creed,  llie  same 
elementary  trutli  is  emphatically  insisted  on.  'I'he  neuter 
amum  ol  former  divines  is  changed  into  the  masculine,  in 
eniinciating  the  mystery.  "  Non  tres  Kterni,  sed  unus 
aetemua."  1  suppose  this  means,  that  each  Divine  Person  is 
"to  be  received  as  the  one  God  as  entirely  and  absolutely  as  He 
■would  be  held  to  be,  if  we  had  never  heard  of  the  other  Two, 
and  that  He  is  not  in  any  respect  less  than  the  one  and  only 
God,  because  They  are  each  that  same  one  God  also ;  or  in 
other  words,  that,  as  each  human  individual  being  has  one 
personality,  the  Divine  Being  has  three. 

Returning  then  to  Athanasius,  I  consider  that  this  same 
mystery  is  implied  in  his  twofold  application  of  the  word 
hypostasis.  The  polytheism  and  pantheism  of  the  heathen 
world  imagined, — not  the  God  whom  natural  reason  can 
discover,  conceive,  and  worship,  one  individual,  living,  and 
personal, — but  a  divinilas,  which  was  cither  a  quality, 
whether  energy  or  life,  or  an  extended  substance,  or  something 
else  equally  inadequate  to  tlie  real  idea  which  the  word 
conveys.  Such  a  divinity  could  not  properly  be  called  an 
hypostasis  or  s.iid  to  be  in  hypesiasi  (except  indeed  as  brute 
matter  may  be  called,  as  in  one  sense  it  can  be  called,  an 
hypostasis),  and  therefore  it  was,  that  that  word  had  some 
fitness,  especially  after  the  Apostle's  adaption  of  it,  Hel/r.  i.  3 
to  denote  the  Christian's  God.  And  this  may  account  for 
the  remark  of  Socrates,  that  it  was  a  new  word,  strange  to 
the  schools  ofancient  philosophy,  which  bad  seldom  professed 
pureiheism  or  natural  theology.  "The  teachers  of  philosophy 
among  the  Greeks,"  he  says,  "have  defined  usia  in  many 
ways :  but  of  hypostasis,  they  have  made  no  mention  at  all. 
IrenKUS,  the  grammarian,  affirms  that  the  word  is  barbarous." 
—Hist.  iii.  7.     The  better  then  was  it  fitted  to  express  that 

Eibject  of  thought,  of  which  the  "  barbarians  "  of 
had  been  the  special  witnesses.     When  the  divine 

440  Appendix. 

hypostasis  was  confessed,  the  word  expressed  or  suggested  thrd 
attributes  of  individuality,  self-subsistence,  self-action,  an»- 
personality,  such  as  go  to  form  the  idea  of  the  Divine  Beir-^ 
to  the  natural  theologian  ;  and,  since  the  difference  beti^'^ 
the  theist  and  the  Catholic  divine  in  their  idea  of  His  natu 
is  simply  this,  that,  in  opposition  to  the  Pantheist,  wl 
cannot  understand  how  the  Infinite  can  be  Personal  at  2k^l, 
the  one  ascribes  to  him  one  personality,  and  the  other  thre<?, 
it  will  be  easily  seen  how  a  word,  thus  characterized  and 
circumstanced,  would  admit  of  being  used  with  but  a  slight 
modification  of  its  sense,  of  the  Trinity  as  well  as  of  the 

Let  us  take,  by  way  of  illustration,  the  word  monad,  which 
when  applied  to  intellectual  beings,  includes  the  idea  o{ 
personality.  Dionysius  of  Alexandria,  for  instance,  speaks  of 
the  monad  and  the  triad:  now,  would  it  be  very  harsh,  if,  as 
he  has  spoken  of  "  three  hypostases "  in  monad  so  he  had 
instead  spoken  of  "  the  three  monads,"  that  is,  in  the  sense  of 
"  thrice  hypostatic  mofiad^^  as  if  the  intrinsic  force  of  the 
word  monas  would  preclude  the  possibility  of  his  use  of 
the  plural  monads  being  mistaken  to  imply  that  he  hcM 
more  monads  than  one?  To  take  an  analogous  case,  it 
would  be  about  the  same  improper  use  of  plural  for  singular, 
if  we  said  that  a  martyr  by  his  one  act  gained  three  \nctoric5 
instead  of  a  triple  victor}',  over  his  three  spiritual  focN 
And  indeed,  though  Athanasius  does  not  directly  speak  ot 
three  monads,  yet  he  implies  the  possibility  of  such  phraseolo^T 
by  teaching  that,  though  the  Father  and  the  Son  are  two, 
the  monas  of  the  Deity  (O^o-nyi)  is  indivisible,  and  that  the 
Deity  is  at  once  Father  and  Son. 

This,  then,  is  what  I  conceive  that  he  means  by  sometimes 
.speaking  of  one,  somtimes  of  three  hypostases.  The  word  ^vA'- 
stasis  stands  neither  for  Person  nor  for  Essence  exclusi\  cly ; 
but  it  means  the  one  Personal  God  of  natural  theoIo-,T,  the 
notion  of  whom  the  Catholic  corrects  and  completes  as  often 

^H  Appendix.  44 1 

es  lie  views  hiin  as  a  Trinity;  of  which  correction  Nazianzen's 
language  (Oral,  xxviii.  g)  conlrasted  with  his  usual  formula 
^vitl.  Orat.  xx.  6)  of  the  Three  Hypostases,  is  au  illustration. 
The  specification  of  three  hypostases  does  not  substantially 
alter  the  sense  of  the  word  itself,  but  is  a  sort  of  catackresis 
"by  which  this  Catholic  doctrine  is  forcibly  brought  out)  as  it 
■would  be  by  the  phrase  "  three  monads"),  viz.  that  each  of 
the  Divine  Pereons  is  simply  the  Unus  et  Singutaris  Deus. 
If  it  be  objected,  that  by  the  same  mode  of  reasoning,  Atha- 
nasius  might  have  said  catachrcstkally  not  only  three  monads 
or  three  hypostases,  but  three  Gods,  I  deny  it,  and  for  this 
reason,  because  hypostasis  is  not  equivalent  to  the  simple 
idea  of  God,  but  is  rather  a  definition  of  Him,  and  that  in 
some  special  elementary  points,  as  essence,  ijersonality,  &c., 
and  because  such  a  mere  improper  use  or  varying  application 
of  the  term  Ai^w/rtjw  would  not  tend  to  compromise  a  truth, 
which  never  must  even  in  forms  of  speech  be  trifled  with,  the 
absolute  numerical  unity  of  the  Supreme  Being.  Though  a 
Catholic  could  not  say  that  there  are  three  Gods,  he  could 
say,  that  the  definition  of  God  applies  to  uims  and  tres. 
Perliaps  it  is  for  this  reason  that  Epiphanius  speaks  of  the 
"  hypostatic  Three,"  "  co-hy postal ic"  "of  the  same  hypostasis," 
Hair.  74,  4  (vid.  Jerome,  Ep.  15,  3),  in  the  spirit  in  which 
St.  Thomasj  I  think,  inteijjrets  the  "  non  tres  letemi,  sed 
unus  cetemus,"  to  turn  on  the  coulrast  of  at'jective  and  sub- 

Petavius  makes  a  remark  which  is  apposite  to  my  present 
purpose.  "Nomen  Dei,"  he  says,  de  Triti.  iii.  9.  §  10,  "  cbm 
sit  exeorum  genere  quie  concieta  dicuntur,  fonnam  signilical, 
lion  abstractam  ab  individuis  proprietatibus,  sed  in  iis  sub- 
sistentem.  Est  enim  Deus  substantia  aliqua  divinitatem 
habens.  Sicut  homo  non  humanam  naturam  separatam,  sed 
in  aliquo  individuo  subsistentem  exponit,  ila  tamen  ut 
individuum  ac  personam,  non  certam  ac  determinatam,  sed 
confuse  infiuiteque  icpresentet,  hoc  est,  iialiiram  in  aliquo,  ut 

442  Appendix. 

diximus,  consistentem  ...  sic  nomen  Dei  propria  ac  directe 
divinitatem  naturamque  divinam  indicat,  assignificat  autem 
eundefn,  ut  in  qucLpiam  personcL  subsisteniem,  nullam  de  tribus 
expresse  designans,  sed  confuse  et  universe^  Here  this  great 
author  seems  to  say,  that  even  the  word  "  Deus  "  may  stand, 
not  barely  for  the  Divine  Being,  but  besides  "  in  quipiam 
person^  subsistentem,"  without  denoting  which  Person ;  and 
in  like  manner  I  would  understand  hypostasis  to  mean  the 
nionas  with  a  like  indeterminate  notion  of  personality, 
(without  which  attribute  the  idea  of  God  cannot  be,)  and 
thus,  according  as  one  hypostasis  is  spoken  of,  or  three,  the 
word  may  be  roughly  translated,  in  the  one  case  "  personal 
substance,"  or  "  being  with  personality,"  in  the  other  "  sub- 
stantial person,"  or  "  person  which  is  in  being."  In  all  cases 
it  will  be  equivalent  to  the  Deity,  to  the  monody  to  the  divine 
usia^  &c.,  though  with  that  peculiarity  of  meaning  which  I 
have  insisted  on. 

5.  Since,  as  has  been  said  above,  hypostasis  is  a  word  more 
peculiarly  Christian  than  usia^  I  have  judged  it  best  to  speak 
of  it  first,  that  the  meaning  of  it,  as  it  has  now  been  ascertained 
on  inquiry,  may  serve  as  a  key  for  explaining  other  parallel 
terms.  Usia  is  one  of  these  the  most  in  use,  certainly  in  the 
works  of  Athanasius  ;  and  we  have  his  authority  as  well  as 
St.  Jerome's  for  stating  that  it  was  once  simply  synonymous 
with  hypostasis.  Moreover,  in  Orat,  iii.  65,  he  uses  the  two 
words  as  equivalent  to  each  other.  If  this  be  so,  what  has 
been  said  above  in  explanation  of  the  sense  he  put  on  the 
word  hypostasis,  will  apply  to  usia  also.  This  conclusion  is 
corroborated  by  the  proper  meaning  of  the  word  usia  itself 
which  answers  to  the  English  word  "  being."  Now,  when 
we  speak  of  the  Divine  Being,  we  mean  to  speak  of  Him,  as 
what  he  is,  6  &i/,  including  generally  His  attributes  and 
characteristics,  and  among  them,  at  least  obscurely.  His 
personaHty.  By  the  ^^ Divine  Being  ^^  we  do  not  commonly 
mean  a  mere  anima  mundiy  or  first  principle  of  life  or  system 

of  laivs.  Usia  then,  thus  considered,  agrees  very  nearly  in 
sense,  from  its  very  etymology,  with  hypostasis.  Further, 
this  was  the  sense  in  which  ,\ristotle  used  it,  viz.  for  what  is 
*'  individuum,"  and  "  nuniero  unura  ;"  and  it  must  not  be 
forgotten  that  the  Neo-platonists,  who  exerted  so  great  an 
influence  on  the  Alexandrian  Church,  professed  tlieAristotelic 
logic.  And  so  St.  Cyril  himself,  the  successor  of  Athanasius 
(Suicer,  Tkes.  in  voce,oWia-) 

This  is  the  word,  and  not  hypostasis^  which  Athanasius 
commonly  uses  in  controversy  with  the  Arians,  to  express 
the  divinity  of  the  Word.  He  speaks  of  the  usia  of  the  Son 
as  being  united  to  the  Father,  and  His  usia  being  the  offspring 
of  the  Father's  usia.  In  these  and  other  passages  usia,  I 
conceive,  is  substantially  equivalent  to  hypostasis,  as  I  have 
explained  it,  viz.  expressing  the  divine  /tovis  with  an  obscure 
intimation  of  personality  inclusively  ;  and  here  I  think  I  am 
able  to  quote  the  words  of  Father  Passaglia,  as  agreeing  (so 
far)  in  what  I  have  said.  "  Quum  hypostasis"  he  says,  tie 
Trinitate,'^.  1302,  "esse  nequeat  sine  substantia,  nihil  vetabat 
quominus  trium  hypostasum  defensores  hypostasim  interdum 
pro  substantia  sumerent,  prcesertim  ubi  hypostasis  opponilur 
rei  non  subsistentt  ac  efficientise."  I  should  wish  to  complete 
the  admission  by  adding,  "  Since  an  intellectual  usia  naturally 
implies  an  hypostasis,  there  was  nothing  to  hinder  usia  being 
used,  when  hypostasis  had  Co  be  expressed." 

6.  After  what  I  have  said  of  usia  and  hypostasis,  it  will  not 
surprise  the  reader  if  I  consider  that  i^vavt  (nature)  also,  in 
the  Alexandrian  theology,  was  equally  capable  of  being  ap- 
plied to  the  Divine  B^ing  viewed  as  One,  or  viewed  as  Three 
or  each  of  the  Three  separately.  Thus  Athanasius  says.  One 
is  the  Divine  Nature,  (milr.  Apoll.  ii.  izfi»-  tit  Incarn.  V, 
fin.)  Alexander,  on  the  other  hand,  calls  the  Father  and  Son 
the  "  two  hypostatic  natures,"  and  speaks  of  the  "  only 
begotten  nature,"  (Theod.  Hist.  i.  4,)  and  Clement  of  "  the 
Son's  nature  "  as  "  most  intimately  near  the  sole  Almighty," 

444  Appendix. 

(Strom,  vii.  2,)  and  Cyril  of  a  "generating  nature ** and  a 
"  generated  "  (Thes.  xi.  p.  85)  and,  in  words  celebrated  in 
theological  history,  of  "  the  Word's  One  Nature  incarnate." 

7.  EtSos  is  a  word  of  a  similar  character.     As  it  is  found  in 
J^olm  V.  37,  it  may  be  indifferently  interpreted  of  essence  or 
of  person ;  the  Vulgate  translates  it  "  neque  specicm  ejus 
vidistis."     In  Athan.  Orat,  iii.  3,  it  is  synonymous  with  dcitj 
or  tisia;  as  ibid.  6  also;  and  apparently  in  ibid,  16,  where 
the  Son  is  said  to  have  the  species  of  the  Father.     And  so  in 
de  Syn,  52.  Athanasius  says  that  there  is  only  one  "species 
deitatis."    Yet,  as  taken  from  Gen,  xxxii.  31,  it  is  considered 
to  denote  the  Son ;  e.^,  Athan.  Or  at,  i.  20,  where  it  is  used 
as  synonymous  with  Image,  cikwi/.     In  like  manner  the  Son 
is  called  "  the  very  species  deitatis."    Ep.  ^Eg,  17.    But 
again  in  Athan.  Orat,  iii.  6,  it  is  first  said  that  the  species  of 
tlie  Father  and  Son  are  one  and  the  same,  then  that  the  Son 
is  the  species  of  the  Father's  (deity),  and  then  that  the  Son  is 
the  species  of  the  Father. 

The  outcome  of  this  investigation  is  this  : — that  we  need 
not  by  an  officious  piety  arbitrarily  force  the  language  of 
separate  Fathers  into  a  sense  which  it  cannot  bear ;  nor  by 
an  unjust  and  naiTOw  criticism  accuse  them  of  error;  nor 
impose  upon  an  early  age  a  distinction  of  terms  belonging  to 
a  later.  The  words  usia  and  hypostasis  were,  naturally  and 
intelligibly,  for  three  or  four  centuries,  practically  syno- 
nymous, and  were  used  indiscriminately  for  two  ideas,  which 
were  afterwards  respectively  denoted  by  the  one  and  the 




Of    THE 







Vide  supra, 

P-  358.) 

The  episcopate,  whose  action  was  so  prompt  and  concordant 
at  Nicasa  on  the  rise  of  Arianism,  did  not,  as  a  class  or  order 
of  men,  play  a  good  part  in  the  troubles  consequent  upon  the 
Council ;  and  the  Laity  did,  The  Catholic  people,  in  the 
length  and  breadth  of  Christendom,  were  the  obstinate  cham- 
pions of  Calliolic  truth,  and  the  bishops  were  not.  Of  course 
there  were  great  and  illustrious  exceptions ;  first,  Atlianasius, 
Hilary,  the  I^tin  Eusebius,  and  Phrebadius ;  and  after  theni, 
Basil,  the  tivo  Gregories,  and  Ambrose  ;  there  are  others,  too, 
who  suffered,  if  they  did  notliing  else,  as  Eustathius,  Paulus, 
Paulinus,  and  Dionysius;  and  the  Egj'plian  bishops,  whose 
weight  was  small  in  the  Church  in  proportion  to  the  great 
power  of  their  Patriarch.  And,  on  tlie  other  hand,  as  1  shall 
say  presently,  there  were  exceptions  to  the  Christian  heroism 
of  the  laity,  especially  in  some  of  the  great  towns.  And 
again,  in  speaking  of  the  laity,  I  speak  inclusively  of  their 
porish-prie.=ts  (so  to  call  them),  at  least  in  many  places ;  but 
on  the  whole,  taking  a  wide  view  of  the  hislory,  we  arc 
obliged  to  say  that  the  governing  body  of  the  Church  came 
short,  and  the  governed  were  pre-eminent  in  faith,  zeal, 
courage,  and  constancy. 

This  is  a  very  remarkable  fact :  but  there  is  a  moral  in  it. 
Perhaps  it  was  permitted,  in  order  to  impress  upon  the  Church 
t  Jhat  very  time  passing  out  of  her  state  of  persecution  to 

^^Jhat  ver 

'  From  llie  RamJIw,  July,  18^9. 

446  Appendix. 

her  long  temporal  ascendancy,  the  great  evangelical  lesson, 
that,  not  the  wise  and  powerful,  but  the  obscure,  the  un- 
learned, and  the  weak  constitute  her  real  strength.  It  was 
mainly  by  the  faithful  people  that  Paganism  was  overthrown; 
it  was  by  the  faithful  people,  under  the  lead  of  Athanasius 
and  the  Egyptian  bishops,  and  in  some  places  supported  by 
their  Bishops  or  priests,  that  the  worst  of  heresies  was  with- 
stood and  stamped  out  of  the  sacred  territory. 
The  contrast  stands  as  follows  : — 


1.  A.D.  325.  The  great  Council  of  Nicsea  of  318  Bishops, 
chiefly  from  the  eastern  provinces  of  Christendom,  under  the 
presidency  of  Hosius  of  Cordova.  It  was  convoked  against 
Arianism,  which  it  once  for  all  anathematized;  and  it  inserted 
the  formula  of  the  "Consubstantial"  into  the  Creed,  with  the 
view  of  establishing  the  fundamental  dogma  which  Arianism 
impugned.  It  is  the  first  CEcumenical  Council,  and  recog- 
nized at  the  time  its  own  authority  as  the  voice  of  the 
infallible  Church.  It  is  so  received  by  the  orbis  terrarum  at 
this  day. 

2.  A.D.  326.  St.  Athanasius,  the  great  champion  of  the 
Homoiision,  was  elected  Bishop  of  Alexandria. 

3.  A.D.  334,  335.  The  Synods  of  Csesareaand  Tyre  (sixty 
Bishops)  against  Athanasius,  who  was  therein  accused  and 
formally  condemned  of  rebellion,  sedition,  and  ecclesiastical 
tyranny ;  of  murder,  sacrilege,  and  magic ;  deposed  from  his 
See,  forbidden  to  set  foot  in  Alexandria  for  life,  and  banished 
to  Gaul.     Also,  they  received  Arius  into  communion. 

4.  A.D.  341.  Council  of  Rome  of  fifty  Bishops,  attended 
by  the  exiles  from  Thrace,  Syria,  &c.,  by  Athanasius,  &c.,  in 
which  Athanasius  was  pronounced  innocent. 

5.  A.D.  341.  Great  Council  of  the  Dedication  at  Antioch, 
attended  by  ninety  or  a  hundred  Bishops.  The  council 
ratified  the  proceedings  of  the  Councils  of  Caesarea  and  Tyre, 

Appendix.  447 

pTaced  an  Aiian  in  the  See  of  Athanasius.  Then  it  pro- 
ceeded to  pass  a  dogmatic  decree  in  reversal  of  the  fonnula 
of  the  "  Con  substantial."  Four  or  five  creeds,  instead  of 
the  Nicene,  were  successively  adopted  by  the  assembled 

Three  of  these  were  circulated  in  the  neighbourhood  ;  but 
as  they  wished  to  send  one  to  Rome,  they  directed  a  fourth 
to  be  drawn  up.     This,  too,  apparently  failed. 

6.  A.D.  345.  Council  of  the  creed  called  Macrostic\ 
This  Creed  suppressed,  as  did  the  third,  the  word  "  sub- 
stance." 'i'he  eastern  Bishops  sent  this  to  the  Bishops  of 
France,  who  rejected  it. 

7.  A.D.  347.  The  great  Council  of  Sardica,  attended  by 
more  than  300  Bishops.  Before  it  commenced,  a  division 
between  its  members  broke  out  on  the  question  whether  or 
not  Athanasius  should  liave  a  seat  in  it.  In  consequence, 
seventy-six  retired  to  Philippopolis,  on  the  Thracian  side  of 
Mount  Hfemus,  and  there  excommunicated  the  Pope  and  the 
Sardican  Fathers.  These  seceders  published  a  sixth  con- 
fession of  faith.  The  Synod  of  Sardica,  including  Bishops 
from  Italy,  Gaul,  Africa,  Egypt,  Cyprus,  and  Palestine,  con- 
firmed the  act  of  the  Roman  Council,  and  restored  Athana- 
sius and  the  other  exiles  to  their  Sees.  The  Synod  of 
Philippopolis,  on  the  contrary,  sent  letters  to  the  civil 
magistrates  of  those  cities,  forbidding  them  to  admit  the 
exiles  into  them.  The  Imperial  power  took  part  with  the 
Sardican  Fathers,  and  Athanasius  went  back  to  Alexandria. 

8.  A.D.  35t.  The  Bishops  of  the  East  met  at  Simiium. 
The  semi-Arian  Bishops  began  to  detach  themselves  from 
the  Arians,  and  to  form  a  separate  party.  Under  pretence 
of  putting  donTi  a  kind  of  Sabeliianism,  they  drew  up  a 
new  creed,  into  which  they  introduced  the  language  of  some 
of  the  ante-Nicene  writers  on  the  subject  of  our  Lord's  divi- 
nity, and  dropped  the  word  "substance." 

g,  A.D.  353,    The  Council  of  Aries.     The  Pope  sent  to  it 

44S  Appendix. 

several  Bishops  as  legates.     The  Fathers  of  the  Coun 
including  the  Pope's  legate,  Vincent,  subscribed  the  co 
demnation  of  Athanasius.     Paulinus,  Bishop  of  Treves,  ws- 
nearly  the  only  one  who  stood  up  for  the  Nicene  faith 
for  Athanasius.     He  was  accordingly  banished  into  Phrygi 
where  he  died. 

10.  A.D.  355.  The  Council  of  Milan,  of  more  than  3 
Bishops  of  the  West.  Nearly  all  of  them  subscribed  th^ 
condemnation  of  Athanasius ;  whether  they  generally  sul> 
scribed  the  heretical  creed,  which  was  brought  forward,  does 
not  appear.  The  Pope's  four  legates  remained  firm,  and  St. 
Dionysius  of  Milan,  who  died  an  exile  in  Asia  Minor.  An 
Arian  was  put  into  his  See.  Saturninus,  the  Bishop  of  Aries, 
proceeded  to  hold  a  Council  at  Beziers  ;  and  its  Fathers 
banished  St.  Hilary  to  Phrygia. 

1 1.  A.D.  357-9.  The  Arians  and  Semi-Arians  successively 
drew  up  fresh  creeds  at  Sirmium. 

12.  A. D.  357-8.  Hosius'  fall.  "  Constantius  used  such 
violence  towards  the  old  man,  and  confined  him  so  straitly, 
that  at  last,  broken  by  suffering,  he  was  brought,  though 
hardly,  to  hold  communion  with  Valens  and  Ursacius  [the 
Arian  leaders],  though  he  would  not  subscribe  against 
Athanasius."    Athan.  Arian.  Hist.  45. 

13.  A.D.  357-8.  And  Liberius.  "The  tragedy  was  not 
ended  in  the  lapse  of  Hosius,  but  in  the  evil  which  befell 
Liberius,  the  Roman  Pontiff,  it  became  far  more  dreadful 
and  mournful,  considering  that  he  was  Bishop  of  so  great  a 
city,  and  of  the  whole  Catholic  Church,  and  that  he  had  so 
bravely  resisted  Constantius  two  years  previously.  There  is 
nothing,  whether  in  the  historians  and  holy  fathers,  or  in  his 
own  letters,  to  prevent  our  coming  to  the  conclusion,  that 
Liberius  communicated  with  the  Arians,  and  confirmed  the 
sentence  passed  by  them  against  Athanasius ;  but  he  is  not 
at  all  on  that  account  to  be  called  a  heretic."  Baron.  Ann. 
357,  38-45.     Athanasius  says :  "  Liberius,  after  he  had  been 

Appendix.  449 

in  banishment  for  two  years,  gave  way,  and  from  fear  of 
threalened  death  was  induced  to  subscribe.  Arian.  Hist. 
^  41.  Sl  Jerome  says  :  "  Liberius,  t^io  victus  exilii,  et  in 
Tuereticam  pravitatem  subscribens,  Romam  quasi  victor  in- 
JtraveraL"     Chron.  ed.  VaL  p.  797. 

14.  A.D.  359.  The  great  Councils  of  Seleucia  and  Arimi- 
num,  being  one  bipartite  Council,  representing  the  East  and 
West  respectively.  At  Seleucia  there  were  150  Bishops,  of 
which  only  the  twelve  or  thirteen  from  Egypt  were  cham- 
pions of  the  Nicene  '*  Consubstantial."  At  Ariminuni  there 
were  as  many  as  400  Bishops,  who,  worn  out  by  the  artifice 
of  long  delay  on  the  part  of  the  Arians,  abandoned  the 
"  Consubstantial,"  and  subscribed  the  ambiguous  formula 
which  the  heretics  had  substituted  for  it. 

15.  About  A.D.  360,  St.  Hilary  says:  "I  am  not  speaking 
of  things  foreign  to  my  knowledge  ;  I  am  not  writing  about 
what  I  am  ignorant  of;  I  have  heard  and  I  have  seen  the 
shortcomings  of  persons  who  are  round  about  me,  not  of 
laymen,  but  of  Bishops.  For,  excepting  the  Bishop  Eleusius 
and  a  few  with  him,  for  the  most  part  the  ten  Asian  pro- 
vinces, within  whose  boundaries  I  am  situate,  are  truly 
ignorant  of  God."  De  Syn.  63.  It  is  observable,  that  even 
Eleusius,  who  is  here  spoken  of  as  somewliat  better  than  the 
Test,  was  a  Scmi-Arian,  according  to  Socrates,  and  even  a 
persecutor  of  Catholics  at  Constantinople ;  and,  according 
to  Sozoraen,  one  of  those  who  were  active  in  causing  Pope 
Liberius  to  give  up  the  Nicene  formula  of  the  "  Consubstan- 
tial." By  the  ten  Asian  provinces  is  meant  the  east  and 
south  provinces  of  Asia  Minor,  pretty  nearly  as  cut  off  by  a 
line  passing  from  Cyzicus  to  Seleucia  through  Synnada, 

i5,  A.D.  360.  St.  Gregory  Nazianzen  says,  about  this 
date ;  "  Surely  the  pastors  have  done  foolislily ;  for,  excepting 
a  very  few,  who  either  on  account  of  their  inslgnilicance 
were  passed  over,  or  who  by  reason  of  their  virtue  resisted, 
and  who  were  to  be  left  as  a  seed  and  root  tor  the  springing 
G  Q 


450  Appendix. 

up  again  and  revival  of  Israel  by  the  influences  of  the  Spiri—  ^^ 
all  temporized,  only  differing  from  each  other  in  this,  th^^ 
some  succumbed  earlier,  and  others  later ;  some  were  fore 
most  champions  and  leaders  in  the  impiety,  and  othei 
joined  the  second  rank  of  the  battle,  being  overcome  by  feaj 
or  by  interest,  or  by  flattery,  or,  what  was  the  most  excusable^^ 
by  their  own  ignorance."     Orat.  xxi.  24. 

17.  A.D.  361.     About  this  time,  St.  Jerome  says  :  "  Nearl^^ 
all  the  churches  in  the  whole  world,  under  the  pretence  0  ^ 
peace  and  of  the  e.nperor,  are  polluted  with  the  communion, 
of  the  Arians."     Chro7i,     Of  the  same  date,  that  is,  upon 
the  Council  of  Ariminum,  are  his  famous  words,  "  Ingemuit 
totus  orbis  et  se  esse  Arianum  miratus  est."    ///  Lucif.  19. 

*'  The  Catholics  of  Christendom  were  strangely  surprised  to 
find  that  the  Council  had  made  Arians  of  them." 

18.  A.D.  362.  State  of  the  Church  of  Antioch  at  this 
time.  There  were  four  Bishops  or  communions  of  Antioch ; 
first,  the  old  succession  and  communion,  which  had  possession 
before  the  Arian  troubles  ;  secondly,  the  Arian  succession, 
which  had  lately  conformed  to  orthodoxy  in  the  person  of 
Meletius ;  thirdly,  the  new  Latin  succession,  lately  created 
by  Lucifer,  whom  some  have  thought  the  Pope's  legate  there  ; 
and,  fourthly,  the  new  Arian  succession,  which  was  started 
upon  the  recantation  of  Meletius.  At  length,  as  Arianism 
was  brought  under,  the  evil  reduced  itself  to  two  Episcopal 
Successions,  that  of  Meletius  and  the  Latin,  which  went  on 
for  many  years,  the  West  and  Egypt  holding  communion 
with  the  latter,  and  the  East  with  the  former. 

19.  St.  Hilary  speaks  of  the  series  of  ecclesiastical  Councils 
of  that  time  in  the  following  well-known  passage :  "  Since  the 
Nicene  Council,  we  have  done  nothing  but  write  the  Creed. 
While  we  fight  about  words;  inquire  about  novelties,  take 
advantage  of  ambiguities,  criticize  authors,  fight  on  party 
questions,  have  difliculties  in  agreeing,  and  prepare  to  anathe- 
matize each  other,  there  is  scarce  a  man  who  belongs  to 

Appendix.  451 

Christ.  Take,  for  instance,  last  year's  Creed,  what  alteration 
is  there  not  in  it  already?  First,  we  have  the  Creed,  which 
tids  lis  not  to  use  the  Nicene  '  consubstantial ; '  then  comes 
another,  which  decrees  and  preaches  it;  next,  the  third, 
excuses  the  word  '  substance,'  as  adopted  by  the  Fathers  in 
their  simplicity ;  lastly,  the  fourth,  which  instead  of  ex- 
cusing, condemns.  We  determine  creeds  by  the  year  or  by 
the  month,  we  change  our  own  determinations,  we  prohibit 
our  changes,  we  anathematize  our  prohibitions.  Thus,  we 
either  condemn  others  in  our  own  persons,  or  ourselves  in 
the  instance  of  others,  and  while  we  bite  and  devour  one 
another,  are  like  to  be  consumed  one  of  another,"  Ad 
Const,  ii.  4,  5. 

20.  A.D.  383.  St.  Gregory  writes  :  "If  I  must  speak  the 
truth,  I  feel  disposed  to  shun  every  conference  of  Bishops  ; 
for  never  saw  I  Synod  brought  to  a  happy  issue,  and  remedy- 
ing, and  not  rather  aggravatmg,  existing  evils.  For  rivalry 
and  ambition  are  stronger  than  reason, — do  not  think  me 
extravagant  for  saying  so, — and  a  mediator  is  more  likely 
to  incur  some  imputation  himself  than  to  clear  up  the  impu- 
tations which  others  lie  under." — Ep.  129. 

Coming  to  the  opposite  side  of  the  contrast,  I  observe 
that  there  were  great  efforts  made  on  the  part  of  the  Arians 
to  render  their  heresy  popular.  Arius  himself,  according  to 
the  Arian  Philostorgius,  "  wrote  songs  for  the  sea,  and  for 
the  mill,  and  for  the  road,  and  then  set  them  to  suitable  f 
music*."  Hist.  ii.  2.  Alexander  speaks  of  the  "running  about" 
of  the  Arian  women,  Theod.  Hist.  i.  4,  and  of  the  buffoonery 
of  their  raea  Socrates  says  that  "  in  the  Imperial  court, 
the  officers  of  the  bed-chamber  held  disputes  with  tlie 

*  The  Itanalations  which  follow  are  for  (he  most  pan  from  Bohn's  and 
the  OKfbrd  editions,  the  passages  being  abridged. 
GG  2 


452  Appendix. 

women,  and  in  the  city,  in  every  house,  there  was  a  war  ^ 
dialectics,"  ii.  2.  Especially  at  Constantinople  there  we^^^' 
as  Gregory  says,  "  of  Jezebels  as  thick  a  crop  as  of  hemlo^^^ 
in  a  field,"  Orat  35,  3 ;  and  he  himself  suffered  from  th:::^^ 
popular  violence  there.  At  Alexandria  the  Arian  wome^  ^ 
are  described  by  Athanasius  as  "running  up  and  down  lik^^  ^ 
Bacchanals  and  furies,"  and  as  "  passing  that  day  in  grief  o^^^ 
which  they  could  do  no  harm."    Hist  Arian,  59. 

The  controversy  was  introduced  in  ridicule  into  the  heat- 
then  theatres,  Euseb.  v.  Const  ii.  6.  Socr.  i.  6.     "  Men  of 
yesterday,"   says  Gregory  Nyssen,  "  mere  mechanics,  oflE^ 
hand  dogmatists  in  theology,  servants  too  and  slaves  that 
have  been  scourged,  run-aways  from  servile  work,  and  philo- 
sophical about  things  incomprehensible.     Of  such  the  city 
is  full ;  its  entrances,  forums,  squares,  thoroughfares ;  the 
clothes-vendors,  the  money-lenders,  the  victuallers.  Ask  about 
pence,  and  they  will  discuss  the  generate  and  ingenerate," 
&c.,  &c.,  tom.  ii.  p.  898     Socrates,  too,  says  that  the  heresy 
"  ravaged  provinces  and  cities ;  and  Theodoret  that,  "  quar- 
rels took  place  in  every  city  and  village   concerning  the 
divine  dogma,  the  people  looking  on,  and  taking  sides." 
Hist  i.  6. 

In  spite  of  these  attempts,  however,  on  the  part  of  the 
Arians,  still,  viewing  Christendom  as  a  whole,  we  shall  find 
that  the  Catholic  populations  sided  with  Athanasius;  and 
the  fierce  disputes  above  described  evidenced  the  zeal  of  the 
orthodox  rather  than  the  strength  of  the  heretical  party. 
This  will  appear  in  the  following  extracts  : — 

I.  Alexandria.  "  We  suppose,"  says  Athanasius,  "  you 
are  not  ignorant  what  outrages  they  [the  Arian  Bishops] 
committed  at  Alexandria,  for  they  are  reported  every  where. 
They  attacked  the  holy  virgins  and  brethren  with  naked 
swords;  they  beat  with  scourges  their  persons,  esteemed 
honourable  in  God's  sight,  so  that  their  feet  were  lamed  by 
the  stripes,  whose  souls  were  whole  and  sound  in  purity  and 
all  good  works."    Athan  Ap.  c,  Arian.  15. 



"Accordingly  Constantius  writes  letters,  and  commences 
a  persecution  against  all.  Gathering  together  a  multitude 
of  herdsmen  and  shepherds,  and  dissolute  youths  belonging 
to  the  tosvn,  armed  with  swords  and  clubs,  they  attacked 
in  a  body  the  Church  of  Quirinus  :  and  some  they  slew,  some 
they  trampled  under  foot,  others  they  beat  with  stripes  and 
cast  into  prison  or  banished.  They  haled  away  many  women 
also,  and  dragged  them  openly  inlo  the  court,  and  insulted 
them,  dragging  thero  by  the  hair.  Some  they  proscribed; 
from  some  they  took  away  their  bread,  for  no  other  reason 
but  tliat  they  might  be  induced  to  join  the  Arians,  and  re- 
ceive Gregory  [the  Arian  Bishop],  who  had  been  sent  by 
the  Emperor."     Athan.  Hist.  Arian.  §  lo, 

"On  the  week  that  succeeded  the  holy  Pentecost,  when 
Ihe  people  after  their  fast,  had  gone  out  to  the  cemetery  to 
pray,  because  that  all  refused  communion  irith  George  [the 
Arian  Bishop],  the  commander,  Sebastian,  straightway  i\ith 
a  multitude  of  soldiers  proceeded  to  attack  the  people,  though 
it  was  the  Lord's  day;  and  finding  a  few  praying  {for  the 
greater  part  had  already  retired  on  account  of  the  lateness 
of  the  hour),  having  lighted  a  pile,  he  placed  certain  virgins 
near  the  fire,  and  endeavoured  to  force  them  to  say  that  they 
were  of  tlie  Arian  faith.  And  having  seized  on  forty  men, 
he  cut  some  fresh  twigs  of  the  palm-tree,  with  the  thorns 
upon  them,  and  scourged  them  on  the  back  so  severely  that 
some  of  them  were  for  a  long  time  under  medical  treatment, 
on  account  of  tlie  thorns  which  had  entered  their  flesh,  and 
others,  unable  to  hear  up  under  their  sufferings,  died.  AH 
those  whom  they  had  taken,  both  the  men  and  the  virgins, 
they  sent  away  into  bani.shment  to  the  great  Oasis.  More- 
over, they  immediately  banished  out  of  Egypt  and  Libya 
the  following  Bishops  [sisteen],  and  the  presbjiers,  Hierax 
and  Dioscorus ;  some  of  them  died  on  the  way,  others  in  the 
place  of  their  banishment.  They  caused  also  more  than 
thirty  Bishops  lo  take  to  flight"     Apol  de  Fug.  7. 

454  Appendix. 

2.  Egypt.  "  The  Emperor  Valens  having  issued  an  ec3ict 
commanding  that  the  orthodox  should  be  expelled  both  fv^^^ 
Alexandria  and  the  rest  of  Egypt,  depopulation  and  ruir»-  to 
an  immense  extent  immediately  followed  ;  some  were  drag^^^^^ 
before  the  tribunals,  others  cast  into  prison,  and  many  t  ^r- 
tured  in  various  ways ;  all  sorts  of  punishment  being  inflict:  ^^ 
upon  persons  who  aimed  only  at  peace  and  quiet"  Sc^  ^^• 
H/sf,  iv.  24. 

3.  The    Monks    (i.)    0/  Egypt,       "  Antony  left  th^ 
solitude  of  the  desert  to  go  about  every  part  of  the  city 
[Alexandria],   warning    the    inhabitants    that    the    Ariaiis 
were  opposing  the  truth,  and  that  the   doctrines  of  the 
Apostles  were  preached  only  by  Athanasius."     Theod.  Hist 
iv.  27. 

"  Lucius,  the  Arian,  with  a  considerable  body  of  troops, 
proceeded  to  the  monasteries  of  Egypt,  where  he  in 
person  assailed  the  assemblage  of  holy  men  with  greater 
fury  than  the  ruthless  soldiery.  When  these  excellent  per- 
sons remained  unmoved  by  all  the  violence,  in  despair  he 
advised  the  military  chief  to  send  the  fathers  of  the  monks, 
the  Egyptian  Macarius  and  his  namesake  of  Alexandria,  into 
exile."     Socr.  iv.  24. 

(2.)  Of  Constantinople,  "  Isaac,  on  seeing  the  emperor 
depart  at  the  head  of  his  army,  exclaimed,  *  You  who  have 
declared  war  against  God  cannot  gain  His  aid.  Cease  from 
fighting  against  Him,  and  He  will  terminate  the  war. 
Restore  the  pastors  to  their  flocks,  and  then  you  will  obtain 
a  bloodless  victory.'  "     Theod.  iv. 

(3-)  ^f  Syria,  &c.  "That  these  heretical  doctrines 
[Apollinarian  and  Eunomian]  did  not  finally  become  pre- 
dominant is  mainly  to  be  attributed  to  the  zeal  of  the  monks 
of  this  period ;  for  all  the  monks  of  Syria,  Cappadocia,  and 
the  neighbouring  provinces  were  sincerely  attached  to  the 
Nicene  faith.  The  same  fate  awaited  them  which  had  been 
experienced  by  the  Arians ;  for  they  incurred  the  full  weight 

Appendix.  455 

of  the  popular  odium  and  aversion,  when  it  was  observed 
that  their  sentiments  were  regarded  with  suspicion  by  the 
monks."     Sozom.  vi.  27. 

(4.)  Of  Cappadocia.  "Gregory,  the  father  of  Gregory 
Theologus,  otherwise  a  most  excellent  man,  and  a  zealous 
defender  of  the  true  and  Catholic  religion,  not  being  on  his 
guard  against  the  artifices  of  the  Arians,  such  was  his  sim- 
plicity, received  with  kindness  certain  men  who  were  con- 
taminated with  the  poison,  and  subscribed  an  impious 
proposition  of  theirs.  This  moved  the  monks  to  such  indig- 
nation, that  they  withdrew  forthwith  from  his  communion, 
and  took  with  them,  after  their  example,  a  considerable  part 
of  his  flock."     Ed.  Bened.  Monit.  in  Greg.  Naz.  Orat.  6. 

4  Antioch.  "  Whereas  he  (the  Bishop  Leontius)  took 
part  in  the  blasphemy  of  Arius,  he  made  a  point  of  con- 
cealing this  disease,  partly  for  fear  of  the  multitude,  partly 
for  the  menaces  of  Constantius  ;  so  those  who  followed  the 
Apostolical  dogmas  gained  from  him  neither  patronage  nor 
ordination,  but  those  who  held  Arianism  were  allowed  the 
fullest  liberty  of  speech,  and  were  placed  in  the  ranks  of 
the  sacred  ministry.  But  Flavian  and  Diodorus,  who  had 
embraced  the  ascetical  life,  and  maintained  the  Apostolical 
dogmas,  openly  withstood  Leontius's  machinations  against 
religious  doctrine.  They  threatened  that  they  would  retire 
from  the  communion  of  his  Church,  and  would  go  to  the  West, 
and  reveal  his  intrigues.  Though  they  were  not  as  yet  in 
the  sacred  ministry,  but  were  in  the  ranks  of  the  laity,  night 
and  day  they  used  to  excite  all  the  people  to  zeal  for  religion. 
They  were  the  first  to  divide  the  singers  into  two  choirs,  and 
to  teach  them  to  sing  in  alternate  parts  the  strains  of  David. 
'  They  too,  assembling  the  devout  at  the  shrines  of  the  mar- 
tyrs, passed  the  whole  night  there  in  hymns  to  God.  These 
things  Leontius  seeing,  did  not  think  it  safe  to  hinder  them, 
for  he  saw  that  the  multitude  was  especially  well  affected 
towards  those  excellent  persons.     Nothing,  however,  could 

456  Appendix. 

persuade  Leontlus  to  correct  his  wickedness.  It  follows^ 
that  among  the  clergy  were  many  who  were  infected  with 
the  heresy  :  but  the  mass  of  the  people  were  champions  (rf 
orthodoxy."     Theodor.  Hist,  ii.  24. 

5.  Edessa.     "  There  is  in  that  city  a  magnificent  church, 
dedicated  to  St.  Thomas  the  Apostle,  wherein,  on  account  of 
the  sanctity  of  the  place,  religious  assemblies  are  continually 
held.     The  Emperor  Valens  wished  to  inspect  this  edifice ; 
when,  having  learned  that  all  who  usually  congregated  there 
were  enemies  to  the  heresy  which  he  favoured,  he  is  said  to 
have  struck  the  prefect  wdth  his  own  hand,  because  he  had 
neglected  to  expel  them  thence.      The  prefect,  to  prevent 
the  slaughter  of  so  great  a  number  of  persons,  privately 
warned  them  against  resorting  thither.    But  his  admonitions 
and  menaces  were  alike  unheeded;  for  on  the  following  day 
they  all  crowded  to  the  church.      AVhen  the  prefect  was 
going  towards  it  with  a  large  military  force,  a  poor  woman 
leading  her  own  little  child  by  the  hand,  hurried  hastily  by 
on  her  way  to  the  church,  breaking  through  the  ranks  of 
the  soldiery.     The  prefect,  irritated  at  this,  ordered  her  to 
be  brought  to  him,  and  thus  addressed  her :    *  Wrctt  hod 
woman,  whither  are  you  running  in  so  disorderly  a  manner?' 
She  replied,  '  To  the  same  place  that  others  are  hastening.' 
*  Have  you  not  heard/  said  he,  *  that  the  prefect  is  about  to 
put  to  death  all  that  shall  be  found  there  ? '     *  Yes/  saM 
the  woman,  'and  therefore  I  hasten,  that  I  may  be  AninJ 
there.'     *  And  whither  are  you  dragging  tliat  little  child  ? ' 
said  the  prefect.     The  woman  ansv/ered,  '  That  he  also  ir.jy 
be  vouchsafed  the  honour  of  martyTdom.'     The  prefect  went 
back  and  infonned  the  Emperor  that  all  were  ready  to  die  in 
behalf  of  their  own  faith  ;  and  added  that  it  would  be  pre- 
posterous to   destroy  so    many  persons  at  one  time,  and 
thus  succeeded  in  restraining  the  Emperor's  A^Tath."     Socr. 
iv.   18.     "Thus  was  the  Christian  faith  confessed  by  the 
whole  city  of  Edessa."    Sozom.  vL  18. 

^^^_  457 

6.  Samosata.  "  The  Arians,  having  deprived  t]iis  esem- 
Jilary  flock  of  their  sliepherd,  elected  in  his  place  an  indi- 
"V-idual  with  whom  none  of  the  inhabitants  of  the  city, 
■whether  poor  or  rich,  servants  or  mechanics,  husbandmen 
«r)r  gardeners,  men  or  women,  young  or  old,  would  hold  com- 
xiinnion.  He  was  left  quite  alone ;  no  one  even  calling  to 
see  him,  or  exchanging  a  word  with  him.  It  is,  however,  said 
that  his  disposition  was  extremely  gende  ;  and  this  is  proved 
Tiy  what  I  am  about  to  relate.  One  day,  when  he  went  to 
bathe  in  the  public  baths,  tlie  attendants  closed  the  doors  ; 
but  he  ordered  the  doors  to  be  thrown  open,  that  the  people 
might  be  admitted  to  bathe  with  himself.  Perceiving  that 
they  remained  in  a  standing  posture  before  him,  imagining 
that  great  deference  towards  himself  was  the  cause  of  this 
conduct,  he  arose  and  left  the  badi.  These  people  believed 
that  the  water  had  been  contaminated  by  his  heresy,  and 
ordered  it  to  be  let  out,  and  fresh  water  to  be  supplied. 
When  he  heard  of  this  circumstance,  he  lefl  the  city,  tliinting 
that  he  ought  no  longer  to  remain  in  a  place  where  he  was 
the  object  of  public  aversion  and  hatred.  Upon  this  re- 
tirement of  Eunomius,  Lucius  was  elected  as  his  successor 
by  the  Arians.  Some  young  persons  were  amusing  them- 
selves with  playing  at  ball  in  the  market-place ;  I.,ucius  was 
passing  by  at  the  time,  and  the  ball  happened  to  fall  beneath 
the  feet  of  the  ass  on  which  he  was  mounted.  The  youths 
Uttered  loud  exclamations,  believing  that  the  ball  was  con- 
taminated. They  lighted  a  fire,  and  hurled  the  ball  through 
it,  believing  that  by  this  process  the  ball  would  be  purified. 
Although  this  was  only  a  childih  deed,  and  although  it 
exhibits  the  remains  of  ancient  superstition,  yet  it  is  suffi- 
cient to  show  the  odium  which  the  Arian  faction  had 
incurred  in  this  city,  Lucius  was  far  from  imitating  the 
mildness  of  Eunomius,  and  he  persuaded  the  heads  of 
the  government  to  exile  most  of  the  clergy."  Theodor.  iv.  15. 

7.  OsRHOENE.     "  Arianism  met  with  similar  opposition  at 

458  Appendix. 

the  same  period  in  Osrhoene  and  Cappadocia.  Basil,  Bishop 
of  Csesarea,  and  Gregory,  Bishop  of  Nazianzus,  were  held 
in  high  admiration  and  esteem  throughout  these  regions.'* 
Sozom.  vi.  21. 

8.  Cappadocia.  "  Valens,  in  passing  through  Cappadocia, 
did  all  in  his  power  to  injure  the  orthodox,  and  to  deliver  up 
the  churches  to  the  Arians.  He  thought  to  accomplish  his 
designs  more  easily  on  account  of  a  dispute  which  was  then 
pending  between  Basil  and  Eusebius,  who  governed  the 
Church  of  Caesarea.  This  dissension  had  been  the  cause  of 
Basil's  departing  to  Pontus.  The  people,  and  some  of  the 
most  powerful  and  wisest  men  of  the  city,  began  to  regard 
Eusebius  with  suspicion,  and  to  meditate  a  secession  from 
his  communion.  The  emperor  and  the  Arian  Bishops 
regarded  the  absence  of  Basil  and  the  hatred  of  the  people 
towards  Eusebius,  as  circumstances  that  would  tend  greatly 
to  the  success  of  their  designs.  But  their  expectations  were 
utterly  frustrated.  On  the  first  intelligence  of  the  intention 
of  the  emperor  to  pass  through  Cappadocia,  Basil  returned  to 
Coesarea,  where  he  effected  a  reconciliation  with  Eusebius. 
The  projects  of  Valens  were  thus  defeated,  and  he  returned 
with  his  Bishops."     Sozom.  vi.  15. 

9.  Pontus.  "  It  is  said  that  when  Eulalius,  Bishop  of 
Amasia  in  Pontus,  returned  from  exile,  he  found  that  his 
Church  had  passed  into  the  hands  of  an  Arian,  and  that 
scarcely  fifty  inhabitants  of  the  city  had  submitted  to  the 
control  of  their  new  bishop."     Sozom.  vii.  2. 

10.  Armenia.  "That  company  of  Arians,  who  came 
with  Eustathius  to  Nicopolis,  had  promised  that  they  would 
bring  over  this  city  to  compliance  with  the  commands  of  the 
Imperial  vicar.  This  city  had  great  ecclesiastical  importance, 
both  because  it  was  the  metropolis  of  Armenia,  and  because 
it  had  been  ennobled  by  the  blood  of  martyrs,  and  governed 
hitherto  by  Bishops  of  great  reputation,  and  thus,  as  Basil 
calls  it,  was  the  nurse  of  religion  and  the  metropolis  of  sound 



doctrine.  Fronto,  one  of  the  city  presbyters,  who  had 
hitherto  shown  himself  as  a  champion  of  tlic  truth,  through 
ambition  gave  himself  up  to  the  enemies  of  Christ,  and  pur- 
chased the  bishoprick  of  the  Arians  at  the  price  of  renouncing 
the  Catholic  fsiith.  This  wicked  proceeding  of  Eustathius 
and  the  Arians  brought  a  new  glory  instsr.d  of  evil  to  the 
Nicopolitans,  since  it  gave  them  aji  opportunity  of  defending 
the  faith.  Fronto,  indeed,  the  Arians  consecrated,  but  there 
was  a  remarkable  unanimity  of  clergy  and  people  in  rejecting 
him.  Scarcely  one  or  two  clerks  sided  with  him ;  on  the 
contrary,hebecametheexecrationofall Ai-menia."  Vita  S. 
Basil.,  Sened.  pp.  clvii,  dviii. 

II.  NicoMEDtA.  "Eighty  pious  clergy  prorceded  to 
Nicomedia,  and  there  presented  to  the  emperor  a  supplica- 
tory petition  complaining  of  the  ill-usage  to  which  they  had 
been  subjected.  Valens,  dissembling  his  displeasure  in  their 
presence,  gave  Modestus,  the  prefect,  a  secret  order  to  appre- 
hend these  persons  and  to  put  them  to  death.  The  prefect, 
fearing  he  should  excite  the  populace  to  a  seditious  move- 
ment against  himself,  if  he  attempted  the  public  execution  of 
so  many,  pretended  to  send  them  away  into  exile,"  &c. 
Socr.  iv.  16. 

IS.  C.M'PADOCiA.  St.  Basil  says,  about  the  year  37a  : 
"Religious  people  keep  silcnce,but  every  blaspheming  tongue 
is  let  loose.  Sacred  things  are  profaned  ;  those  of  the  laity 
who  are  sound  in  faith  avoid  the  places  of  worship  as  schools 
of  impiety,  and  raise  their  hands  in  solitudes,  with  groans 
and  tears  to  the  Lord  in  heaven."  Ep.  92.  Four  years  after 
he  writes  :  "  Matters  have  come  to  this  pass  ;  the  people 
have  left  their  houses  of  prayer,  and  assemble  in  deserts, — 

-pitiable  sight ;  women  and  children,  old  men,  and  men 
ifirm,  wretchedly  faring  in  the  open  air,  amid  the 

tet  profuse  rains  and  snow-storms  and  winds  and  frosts  of 

;  and  again  in  summer  under  a  scorching  sun.    To 

I  they  submit,  because  they  will  have  no  part  in  the 

460  Appendix. 

wicked  Arian  leaven."  Ep.  242.  Again :  ''Only  one 
offence  is  now  vigorously  punished, — an  accurate  observance 
of  our  fathers'  traditions.  For  this  cause  the  pious  are 
driven  from  their  countries,  and  transported  into  deserts. 
The  people  are  in  lamentation,  in  continual  tears  at  home 
and  abroad.  There  is  a  cry  in  the  city,  a  cry  in  the  coun- 
try, in  the  roads,  in  the  deserts.  Joy  and  spiritual  cheerful- 
ness are  no  more  ;  our  feasts  are  turned  into  mourning ;  our 
houses  of  prayer  are  shut  up,  our  altars  deprived  of  the  spiri- 
tual worship."    Ep.  243. 

13.  Paphlagqnia,  &c.  '*  I  thought,"  says  Julian  in  one 
of  his  Epistles,  "  that  the  leaders  of  the  Galilseans  would  feel 
more  grateful  to  me  than  to  my  predecessor.  For  in  his 
time  they  were  in  great  numbers  turned  out  of  their  homes, 
and  persecuted,  and  imprisoned ;  moreover,  multitudes  of 
so-called  heretics "  [  the  Novatians  who  were  with  the 
Catholics  against  the  Arians]  **  were  slaughtered,  so  that 
in  Samosata,  Paphlagonia,  Bithynia,  and  Galatia,  and  many 
other  nations,  villages  were  utterly  sacked  and  destroyed  " 
Ep.  52. 

14.  ScYTHiA.  "  There  are  in  this  country  a  great  number 
of  cities,  of  towns,  and  of  fortresses.  According  to  an 
ancient  custom  which  still  prevails,  all  the  churches  of  the 
whole  country  are  under  the  sway  of  one  Bishop.  Valens 
[the  emperor]  repaired  to  the  Church,  and  strove  to  gain  over 
the  Bishop  to  the  heresy  of  Arius ;  but  this  latter  manfully 
opposed  his  arguments,  and  after  a  courageous  defence  of  the 
Nicene  doctrines,  quitted  the  emperor,  and  proceeded  to 
another  church,  whither  he  was  followed  by  the  people. 
Valens  was  extremely  offended  at  being  left  alone  in  a  church 
with  his  attendants,  and  in  resentment  condemned  Vetranio 
[the  Bishop]  to  banishment.  Not  long  after,  however,  he  re- 
called him,  because,  I  believe,  he  apprehended  insurrection." 
Sozom.  vi.  21. 

15.  Constantinople.     "Those  who  acknowledged  the 

Appendix,  46: 

doctrine  of  con  substantiality  were  not  only  expelled  from  the 
churches,  but  also  from  the  cities.  But  although  expulsion 
at  first  satisfied  them  [the  Arians],  they  soon  proceeded  to 
the  worse  extremity  of  inducing  compulsory  communion 
with  thenij  caring  little  for  such  a  desecration  of  the  churches. 
They  resorted  to  all  Irinds  of  scourgings,  a  variety  of  tortures, 
and  confiscation  of  property.  Many  were  punished  with  exile, 
some  died  under  the  torture,  and  others  were  put  to  death 
while  being  driven  from  their  country.  These  atrocities  were 
exercised  throughout  all  the  eastern  cities,  but  especially  at 
Constantinople."    Socr.  ii.  37. 

16.  Illyria.  "  The  parents  of  Theodosius  were  Christians 
and  were  attached  to  the  Nicene  doctrine,  hence  he  took 
pleasure  in  the  ministration  of  Ascholius  [Bishop  of  Thessa- 
lonica].  He  also  rejoiced  at  finding  that  the  Arian  heresy 
had  not  been  received  in  Illyria."     Sozom,  vii.  4. 

17.  Neighbourhood  of  Macedonia.  "  Theodosius  in- 
quired concerning  the  religious  sentiments  which  were 
prevalent  in  the  other  provinces,  and  ascertained  that,  as 
far  as  Macedonia,  one  form  of  belief  was  universally  pre- 
dominant," &C.     Ibid. 

18.  Rome.  "  With  respect  to  the  doctrine  no  dissension 
arose  either  at  Rome  or  in  any  other  of  the  Western  Churches  j 
the  people  unanimously  adhered  to  the  form  of  belief  esta- 
blished at  Nicrea."     Sozom.  vi.  23. 

"  Liberius,  returning  to  Rome,  found  the  mind  of  ihe  mass 
of  men  alienated  from  him,  because  he  had  so  shamefully 
yielded  to  Constantius.  And  thus  it  came  to  pass,  that  those 
persons  who  had  hitherto  kept  aloof  from  Feli-t  [the  rival 
Pope],  and  had  avoided  his  communion  in  favour  of  Liberius, 
on  hearing  what  had  happened,  left  him  for  Felix,  who  raised 
the  Catholic  standard."  Baron.  Ann.  357,  56.  He  tells  us 
besides  (57),  that  the  people  would  not  even  go  to  the 
public  ballis,  lest  they  should  bathe  with  the  parly  of 

462  Appendix, 

19  Milan.  At  the  Council  of  Milan,  Eusebius  of 
Vercellae,  when  it  was  proposed. to  draw,  up  a  declaration 
against  Athanasius,  "  said  that  the  Council  ought  first  to  be 
sure  of  the  faith  of  the  Bishops  attending  it,  for  he  had  found 
out  that  some  of  them  were  polluted  with  heresy.  Accord- 
ingly he  brought  before  the  Fathers  the  Nicene  Creed,  and 
said  he  was  willing  to  comply  with  all  their  demands,  after 
they  had  subscribed  that  confession.  Dionysius,  Bishop  of 
Milan,  at  once  took  up  the  paper  and  began  to  write  his 
assent ;  but  Valens  [the  Arian]  violently  pulled  pen  and 
paper  out  of  his  hands,  crying  out  that  such  a  course  of  pro- 
ceeding was  impossible.  Whereupon,  after  much  tumult, 
the  question  came  before  the  people,  and  great  was  the 
distress  of  all  of  them  ;  the  faith  of  the  Church  was  attacked 
by  the  Bishops.  They  then,  dreading  the  judgment  of  the 
people,  transfer  their  meeting  from  the  church  to  the  Imperial 
palace."     Hilar,  ad  Const,  i.  8. 

Again :  "As  the  feast  of  Easter  approached,  the  empress  sent 
to  St.  Ambrose  to  ask  a  church  of  him,  where  the  Arians  who 
attended  her  might  meet  together.    He  replied,  that  a  Bishop 
could  not  give  up  the  temple  of  God.     The  pretorian  prefect 
came  into  the  church,  where  St.  Ambrose  was  attended  by 
the  people,  and  endeavoured  to  persuade  him  to  yield  up  at 
least  the   Portian   Basilica.     The  people  were  clamorou> 
against  the  proposal ;  and  the  prefect  retired  to  report  how 
matters  stood  to  the  emperor.     The  Sunday  following  St. 
Ambrose  was  explaining  the  creed,  when  he  was  informs 
that  the  officers  were  hanging  up  the  Imperial  hangings  ii 
the  Portian  Basilica,  and  that  upon  this  news  the  pcop! 
were  repairing  thither.     While  he  was  offering  up  the  hoi 
sacrifice,  a  second  message  came  that  the  people  had  seizo 
an  Arian  priest  as  he  was  passing  through  the  street     11 
despatched  a  number  of  his  clergy  to  the  spot  to  resciit 
the  Arian  from  his  danger.     The  court  looked  on  this  resi- 
tance  of  the  people  as  seditious,  and  immediately  laid  co 

Appendix.  463 

sideraljle  fines  upon  the  whole  body  of  the  tradesmen  of  the 
city.  Several  were  thro\vnmto  prison.  In  three  days'  time 
these  tradesmen  were  fined  two  hundred  pounds  weight  of 
gold,  and  they  said  that  they  were  ready  to  give  as  much 
again  on  condition  that  they  might  retain  their  faith.  The 
prisons  were  filled  with  tradesmen ;  all  the  ofRccrs  of  the 
household,  secretaries,  agents  of  the  emperor,  and  dependent 
otficcTs  who  served  under  various  counts,  were  kept  within 
doots,  and  were  forbidden  to  appear  in  public,  under 
pretence  that  they  should  bear  no  part  in  sedition.  Men  of 
higher  rank  were  menaced  with  severe  consequences,  unless 
the  Basilica  were  surrendered.  .  .  . 

"  Next  morning  the  Basilica  was  sunounded  by  soldiers  ; 
but  it  was  reported,  that  these  soldieira  had  sent  to  the 
Eniperor  to  tell  him,  that  if  he  wished  to  come  abroad  he 
might,  and  that  they  would  attend  him,  if  he  was  going  to 
the  assembly  of  the  Catholics :  otlierwise,  that  they  would 
go  to  that  ivliich  would  be  held  by  St.  Ambrose,  indeed, 
the  soldiers  were  all  Catholics,  as  well  as  the  citizens  of 
Milan  :  there  were  so  few  heretics  there,  except  a  few  officers 
of  the  emperor  and  ."iome  Goths.  .  .  , 

"  St.  was  continuing  his  discourse,  when  he  was